RPSB urging parents to enroll in early education programs

Published: Feb. 1, 2023 at 6:41 PM CST
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ALEXANDRIA, La. (KALB) - February is a busy month for the Rapides Parish School Board, and they are using it to urge the community to get involved with early childhood education.

The Rapides Early Childhood Network is continuing the push to make sure every child is properly prepared before entering Kindergarten.

In Cenla, 1,200 students at every age level are disadvantaged. In an effort to reduce that number, RPSB launched the Early Childhood Network to oversee programs like Early Learning, Head Start and Pre-K.

These programs are designed to increase access and improve the quality of early childhood education. However, the parish said it is currently only serving 10% of the students in need.

Cindy Rushing, early childhood director for Rapides Parish, said it is critical to target children within the first 2,000 days of their life.

“So, we are giving them that opportunity to get that language, print-rich positive learning environment where there are caregivers that will meet their needs and will help them to improve and meet those skills they need,” said Rushing.

Throughout the state, February is dedicated to young students, by highlighting early education and enrollment.

Jeff Powell, superintendent of Rapides Parish Schools, said though the month focuses on early education, there is clearly a lesson for parents as well.

“So really we are targeting parents,” said Powell. “Now is the time to get your child enrolled in an early childhood program. Our network includes childcare centers, our Head Start programs and our Pre-K programs. We have opportunities for access for parents throughout our community.”

For more information on the Rapides Early Childhood Network, or the programs they offer, click here.

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