August 19, 2014 at 12:00 PM
BRIDGEWATER, NJ - With parents in the Bridgewater-Raritan Regional School District searching for an alternative to the part-time kindergarten program, The Jointure, based in Raritan, has a plan.
The Jointure is offering Kinderwrap, a program that supplements the half day the district already offers. Children could attend the morning program with the district, and then be bused to the PeopleCare Center, on Finderne Avenue, for an afternoon with The Jointure.
That would also work in reverse for those students attending the afternoon kindergarten program with the district and choosing to be with The Jointure in the morning.
“They would come to us to supplement,” said Erica Condon, executive director of The Jointure.
The Jointure, Condon said, will provide the buses to take students to the PeopleCare Center from their respective schools or vice versa.
In addition, Condon said, they are offering a before and after school program for the students.
The program is $450 per month, and Kinderwrap will follow the district’s calendar, in terms of days off from school, half days and more.
The purpose of the Kinderwrap program, Condon said, is to reinforce what the students are learning in the district.
“It would be like they are getting a full day of kindergarten,” she said. “There will be some introduction of skills, but the program is mainly to reinforce what the students are doing in school.”
Condon said she approached assistant superintendent Cheryl Dyer about this program.
“We had had conversations with her prior to this about before and after school, and learned there was a parent advocacy group wanting full day kindergarten, and that the district couldn’t provide that this year,” Condon said.
In the past, Condon said, they had offered the program in conjunction with the Branchburg School District, until they started offering full day kindergarten this year.
And, Condon said, they will offer the program for the Bridgewater-Raritan Regional School District until full day kindergarten is offered there too.
The district has begun looking into the costs and more associated with full day kindergarten, with a goal of beginning it in two to three years.
“The Jointure approached me a while back about their Kinderwrap program and asked if the district would be willing to partner with them with regard to curriculum,” Dyer said. “It is my understanding that they are looking to develop a program that would build on or enhance the learning that children experience in our kindergarten classes.”
Dyer said the district is not designing the program or putting it together with The Jointure.
“We are interested in collaborating with non-for-profit or other structured learning providers that serve the students of Bridgewater-Raritan,” she said.
Condon said she just recently sent out information packets, so there have been no sign-ups yet, but there has been some interest from parents. The program will be on a first-come first-served basis, with only 20 spots each available in the morning session and in the afternoon session.
She said they are hoping to find a second location for the program in the Bradley Gardens or Milltown area of the district to offer it to even more students in the future.
“There will be open enrollment as long as there is space,” Condon said.
For more information, or to register, visit jointure.org, or call 908-722-0233.