JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — As the new school year begins, the nonprofit One Place is reflecting on a program helping children transition from preschool to Kindergarten and in-person learning.
This summer, One Place offered a program for children transitioning from Pre-K to Kindergarten to mitigate some of the learning loss that could occur from the COVID-19 pandemic. The program helped children who could not attend in person Pre-K or had attendance issues in Pre-K.
Funding for the One Place program was provided by the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act. The program was a maximum of six weeks, from June 21 to August 16. There were 219 sites in North Carolina, five of which were in Onslow County.
The program was held at Abundance of Love, Excel Learning Center 11 and New Beginnings 1, 2, and 3 in Onslow County. They were able to serve 114 children and 29% of those were military dependents.
“I think, as we’re going through the pandemic and families are experiencing challenges across the board, particularly with the education piece and young children, having those extra supports are really important,” said Molly McCabe, marketing and communications specialist for One Place.
The children enrolled in the program were present for five days of the week and 6.5 hours each day. This program helped children who may have forgotten skills they were taught in the spring.
McCabe said the future of the program is up in the air. They could possibly have the program again, but it depends on funding and data. The data will show if students met milestones and learning markers through the program.
McCabe said One Place Preschool programs in Onslow County are available to children ages 3-4 by August 31, 2021, and they are always accepting applications. Enrollment can be found on the organization’s website. There is no cost to eligible families.