Early Childhood:

     The Manchester School District offers a number of preschool programs in several locations. The days the programs are offered vary according to the location and the needs of the students enrolled. Most programs are 2 ½ hours long.
     Special Education: Studies have shown that early intervention is essential in helping children overcome learning disabilities. Students in need of services including speech therapy, physical therapy, and occupational therapy are enrolled in a preschool program in order to receive services. While space is limited for other children, children with disabilities are guaranteed a space in the preschool.
     Child Find:Child Find is a component of the Individuals with Disabilities in Education Act (IDEA) that requires states to identify, locate, and evaluate all children with disabilities, aged birth to 21, who are in need of early intervention or special education services. If your child has been identified as having disabilities or you suspect your child might have disabilities, check the developmental checklist at:
http://preschool.mansd.org/child-find-evaluation-unit or contact Child Find at 628-6257
     Even Start: Even Start is a federally funded education program for low-income families designed to improve the academic achievement of young children and their parents, especially in the area of reading. Children are enrolled in preschool and parents receive adult literacy education, English language instruction, if needed, and parenting education. Childcare is provided for children under age 3. Contact Even Start at 665-6829.
      Autism Support: The school district provides a full day program (9AM-2PM) for students ages 3-5 with autism when their Individual Education Plan (IEP) warrants it. Other children with autism are placed in regular district-run preschool classes.
     Side by Side Program: A limited number of spots in the preschool programs are available to children without disabilities. The Side by Side program integrates preschoolers without disabilities with students who are receiving services. Families pay tuition for this program. Children are screened beforehand to be sure this is an appropriate program for them.
     Title 1 Preschool program: Children ages 3-5 who live in Title 1 School neighborhoods are eligible to attend preschool classes either in Side by Side classes or preschool classes at the Bishop O’Neill Center. Enrollment is based on need and space availability. Contact the main preschool office at 624-6325.
      Outreach: The School district also works with preschoolers who are enrolled in the VNA Child Care Center, Headstart, Wee Play School, Little Folks Schoolhouse.
     Transportation: Transportation is provided for students with educational disabilities. Parents of other students are responsible for transporting their children to and from school.

Early Childhood Educational Locations:
Main Office -- 624-6325
Bishop O'Neill Center -- 665-6897
Green Acres -- 624-6330
Jewett Street School -- 624-6336
Parker-Varney School -- 624-6338
Smyth Road School -- 624-6340

will be housed at Parker-VarNey Elementary School

Check out our "Ready...Set...Kindergarten!" web site with videos for parents. http://www.mansd.org/kindergarten


Helping your child get ready for school:

     Talk to your child: Talking to children builds their vocabulary and helps them learn grammar and syntax. Explain what you are doing. Ask them questions, such as, “Where is your nose?” or “What color is the boy’s shirt?”
     Buy them crayons: Crayons provide a great way to learn the colors. In addition, coloring and playing with play dough are great ways to build the fine motor skills your child will need in order to write.
     Teach them to identify letters and numbers: Point out letters and numbers on signs, cereal boxes, in books, and everywhere else. Letter and number puzzles are also a good way to teach children numbers and letters.
     Count with your child: Count steps as you climb them; count toes and fingers; count pennies, beans, and other household objects. This will give your child something concrete and physical to associate with the numerals as they learns them.
     Read to them: When you read to children point out the words and ask them questions about the story and the pictures. Show them the title and the name of the author. You can build a home library inexpensively by visiting thrift stores and yard sales. If your first language is not English, reading to your child in your native language will help your child build many of the necessary pre-literacy skills to learn to read in English.
     Visit the public library: Choosing books for your child may seem overwhelming. The children’s librarian can help you find books that match your child’s age and interest and it’s all free. Anyone who lives, works, attends school, or owns property in Manchester can obtain a library card. Bring a valid photo ID and current address information. Minors under 18 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian to obtain a card.

Manchester Public Library
405 Pine Street

West Manchester Community Library
76 North Main Street

Extended Learning Opportunities: http://elo.mansd.org

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Manchester Community College




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