District #61 offers a comprehensive educational 1/2 day PreKindergarten Program for eligible three and four-year-old children and their families at Pershing, Southeast (full-day), and Enterprise. Student eligibility is determined through a community-wide play-based screening process which includes a developmental, speech and language, motor, and social assessments along with a parent interview. Each 1/2 day PreKindergarten class has a combination of three and four-year-old students attending five half-days per week while the full-day program at Southeast is only for four-year-old students.
Based on the student’s individual assessment, the PreKindergarten focuses on providing opportunities that will engage students in activities supporting cognitive, motor, social, emotional, self-help, visual and auditory discrimination, language and literacy development. Developmentally appropriate hands-on activities are based on the Illinois Early Learning Standards. The activities provide opportunities to reinforce a love of learning which will enhance transitional concepts as students embark on their young academic careers.
The Prekindergarten classrooms are paired with an Early Childhood Special Education class for music, library, P.E., field trips, assemblies, and other activities that are deemed appropriate for individual students.