by Janet Dabbs
After offering a preschool program approximately nine years at Hurricane Deck Elementary School in Sunrise Beach, the Camdenton R-III School District has cut the program due to funding shortages.
According to Principal Christina Goldt, the program was funded through the federal IDEA (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) Special Services program, which provides funding for special-needs preschool students.
“We may be able to offer a preschool program in the future, if we can get the funding,” Goldt said.
To be funded, the school would need 10 to 20 students enrolled in the program. At the beginning of the 2016-2017 school year, the school had eight special needs preschool students. During the school year, three of the special-needs students dropped out, leaving only five by the end of the year.
Special-needs students qualify to attend preschool at Dogwood Elementary School on the main R-III campus in Camdenton, with free bus transportation.
All preschool students are eligible to attend Dogwood Elementary Preschool, but they need to supply their own transportation if they are not special-needs students.
Other preschool programs on the west side of Lake of the Ozarks include Lake West Christian Academy in Sunrise Beach, and Loving Hands Preschool and Daycare in Laurie.
Hurricane Deck Elementary will offer a Jumpstart program 7:45 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday to Friday, through Wednesday, June 28, for students who turn 5 by the end of July 2017.
Jumpstart prepares students academically and socially for the 2017-2018 kindergarten class. The school is still accepting students for the free Jumpstart program. For more information, call the school at 573-374-5369.