The Rotary Club of Prescott-Frontier is requesting a $2000 matching grant that allows for the creation of a safety zone within and around a newly constructed Preschool playground at the Lincoln Elementary School, Prescott Unified School District (PUSD). The primary ingredients of the safety zone that will be paid for by the matching grant funds consist of proper material fill and a retaining structure. The total cost for the entire playground is about $30,000. This includes excavation of the site, installation of the safety zone, purchase and installation of playground apparatus, and fencing around the site. The $2000-dollar grant and club matching funds allow for purchase and installation of "Playground" wood chips and concrete containment curbing (see budget). The playground is being constructed during the current summer break in time for the opening of school in Mid-August.
PUSD is expanding its Pre-K programing into an additional school facility effective the beginning of the 2018-2019 school year. The Pre-K class at the Lincoln Elementary School will be licensed by the Arizona Department of Health (ADH) and the Arizona Department of Education (ADE) and accredited by Quality First.
"Quality First is a signature program of First Things First, a program that partners with parents and communities to give all Arizona children the opportunity to arrive at kindergarten healthy and ready to succeed." "90% of a child's brain develops before age five. High quality education for young children improves their health and promotes development and learning. Quality early learning settings help children develop crucial skills like motivation, self-control, focus and self-esteem." (Quality First, www.qualityfirstaz.com).
Meeting licensing and Quality First standards comes with both benefits and requirements. A specific requirement is the construction of a preschool sized playground. One significant characteristic of the Lincoln School Pre-K program is that because the program meets ADH and ADE licencing and Quality First standards, the 63% of children attending the program who come from low income families will be able to attend tuition free. Other benefits and requirements include regularly scheduled classes in art and music and being able to take advantage of school district transportation and food services. All program teachers are certified in early childhood education and/or special education.
The Prescott-Frontier Rotary Club has a continuing relationship of supporting PUSD special learning programs that date back almost to the club's charter in 1973. Partnering with the Lincoln Elementary School to help enable the creation of a licensed and accredited Pre-Kindergarten program represents our latest partnering endeavor.