By Colleen Curry
Kindergartners have to spend more time hitting the books and less time playing around, at least according to one school in New York state.
Harley Avenue Primary School in Elwood, N.Y., is facing a parental uproar after it canceled its annual kindergarten show so students could focus on their studies.
The school sent out a letter in the beginning of April notifying parents that because of all of the snow days this year, the school was canceling the show and would use the school day for academics. Parents could instead come watch their children at the annual Games Day.
Parents, however, were upset at the news, prompting Principal Ellen Best-Laimit to send a follow-up letter in which she explained that the youngsters need to focus on preparing for college and their careers.
“The reason for eliminating the Kindergarten show is simple. We are responsible for preparing children for college and career with valuable lifelong skills and know that we can best do that by having them become strong readers, writers, coworkers and problem solvers,” she wrote.
One parent who received the letter started a Change.org petition to have the show reinstated. It has garnered more than 2,000 signatures.
Peter Scordo, superintendent of schools, released a statement through a spokesman today saying that the school has “significant goals for our youngest learners.”
“Our educators believe that the traditional kindergarten performance requires multiple days away from classroom work for preparation and execution, and together with the lost instructional time this year due to poor weather, is not the best use of the limited time we have with our youngest learners,” he said.
The school is holding a meeting tonight with parents to discuss the issue. Their children, presumably, will be home working on SAT flash cards.