Cedar Springs Public Schools Young 5 ProgramTop of Page

Dear Incoming Kindergarten Families,
I am happy to communicate that the CSPS Board of Education approved the implementation of a Young 5 Program at Cedar Trails Elementary! Below are answers to some frequently asked questions.
Cedar Spring Public Schools Young 5 Program

What is the purpose of this program? Our Young 5 program recognizes the natural variation in children and emphasizes the unique progress that each child makes before and during their kindergarten school year. Cedar Springs Public schools emphasize that children all meet a certain level of performance in core subjects like reading and math by a certain time. Our Young 5 program helps to meet the needs for children who may not have reached recognized developmental milestones and need the "gift of time" to develop socially, emotionally, and academically before entering the pace and rigor of today’s kindergarten classroom. Our program prepares children for kindergarten by teaching them school readiness skills. The additional year also allows students to build confidence, self-esteem, and friendships.
How are students selected for the program? For our Young 5 program, it is desirable for, but not restrict-ed to, children who turn five between September 2nd and December 1st of the enrolled school year. Children that have had little to no prior preschool experience and/or children whose parents are concerned about their child’s social, emotional, or academic development may also benefit from the Young 5 program.
How does the Young 5 program differ from kindergarten? The Young 5 program is not intended to replace kindergarten. Rather, think of the Young 5 program as the prequel to kindergarten. It's an extra year for students to develop at their own pace while still having the experience of real school and learning how to “do school.” The goal for the children in the Young 5 program is to enter kindergarten confidently with the necessary foundational pre-kindergarten skills.
What is the Young 5 program schedule and format? The Young 5 program is a full-day program which runs five days a week, just like kindergarten. Class schedules follow the start and end times for Cedar Trails Elementary and the district calendar. All students participate in district offered specials. For those students who qualify, special education services are provided.
How much does the program cost? Our program is absolutely free! Bus service through the Cedar Springs Public Schools Transportation Department is included.
Who is teaching the Young 5 program? Our program is taught by state certified CSPS teachers who are experienced in working with young children or who have an early childhood endorsement (ZA/ZS).
How do I apply for my child experience the Young 5 program? Complete the attached Young 5 Program Request Form and age waiver and return it to Cedar Trails by June 30th. If can be dropped off in person, emailed, faxed or sent as a photo attachment to ctoffice@csredhawks.org.
We will be contacting potential Young 5 families in August, when we send out class placement letters. If you have any questions, please call the Cedar Trails office at 616-696-4884. The office will be closed from July 1st-August 10th. Enjoy your summer!
Beth Whaley
Principal, Cedar Trails Elementary