Preparing Your Child for Kindergarten

Roaring Fork School District's Common Questions About Preparing Your Child for Kindergarten, Answered

Is there a cost for public kindergarten?

No. On May 1, 2019, the Colorado state legislature passed HB19-1262 to fund full-day kindergarten. 

What about school fees and supplies?

Parents are asked to pay for fees, supplies, and field trips, which vary by school. Fees for 2019-20 are:

  • Roaring Fork Schools, non-charter (Basalt Elementary, Crystal River Elementary, Glenwood Springs Elementary School, Riverview School, Sopris Elementary): $90/year or less

  • Carbondale Community School: $538/year (includes all field trip and activities fees)

  • Ross Montessori School: $300/year for all grades K-8

  • Two Rivers Community School: $500/year for all grades ($450 if paid early; fees waived for kindergarteners who are paying part-time tuition)

Which elementary schools are “in the district”?

The Roaring Fork School District includes Basalt Elementary in Basalt, Crystal River Elementary in Carbondale, and three Glenwood Springs elementary schools: Glenwood Springs Elementary, Sopris Elementary, and Riverview School. The Carbondale Community School is the Roaring Fork Schools’ in-district charter. Ross Montessori and Two Rivers Community School are charter schools authorized within the Charter Schools Institute, a separate district.

When does the school day start and end?

The school day starts between 7:45 a.m. and 8:10 a.m. (varies by school) and ends between 3:15 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. (varies by school). All Roaring Fork Schools (not including the Carbondale Community School) and Two Rivers Community School have early release every Wednesday, when school ends between 1:40 p.m. and 2:15 p.m. (varies by school). The Carbondale Community School does not have early release Wednesdays, but takes one day per month for teacher professional development (no school for students). Ross Montessori does not have early release Wednesday.

What are the extended-day (afterschool) options for students?

Some extended day providers that serve our district include: Access AfterSchool/SecondShift (Ross Montessori and Riverview), Beyond the Bell (Sopris Elementary), Camp Chip-a-Tooth (Basalt Elementary), Camp Run-a-Muk (Crystal River Elementary), and Springboard (Riverview, Glenwood Springs Elementary). They're all private providers, and all charge a fee. Most offer Child Care Assistance Program funding to qualifying parents that offsets or fully funds afterschool care based on family income.

How old does my child have to be to attend kindergarten?

Children must be five years old by October 1, 2019, to attend kindergarten during the 2019-20 school year. Exceptions are only granted to highly exceptional children via the Early Access process outlined by the Colorado Department of Education.

How do I learn about school performance data?

The Colorado Department of Education reports on school and district-level data (including district and school performance framework ratings, graduation and dropout rates, educator effectiveness ratings, student achievement and growth data on state assessments, demographic data, and much more) through a website called SchoolView. You can access their data dashboards at CDE.State.CO.US/Schoolview. Information about the Roaring Fork Schools (including student, staff, and family survey data) can be found at RFSchools.com.

What is the average size of a kindergarten class?

  • Carbondale Community School: 14

  • Roaring Fork Schools (non-charter): 16-20 (with one or two staff)

  • Ross Montessori School: 22 (with two adults)

  • Two Rivers Community School: 18-20 (with teacher’s aide)

Is my child ready for kindergarten?

The only requirement that determines if a child is ready for kindergarten is that he/she needs to be five years old before October 1. It is the school's responsibility to be ready for kindergarteners of all levels, rather than the child's responsibility to be ready for kindergarten. Here are a few things that will help children be more successful in kindergarten:

  • Read with your child everyday and ask questions about what is happening in the story.

  • Help your child know his/her first and last name and practice writing it.

  • Teach your child to follow two-step and three-step directions.

  • Teach your child to count up to 20 objects.

  • Practice getting your child ready to put on shoes, coats, and snow pants independently.

  • Give your child time to play and interact with peers so they can practice sharing and problem-solving.

  • Practice identifying, managing, and talking about feelings with your child.

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