Education Center Holds Promise For Future

Friday, April 11th 2008, 7:14 pm
By: News On 6

A new education center holds promise to change the future of Sand Springs.  The building will make room for new emphasis on educating pre-schoolers.  The News On 6's Emory Bryan reports Sand Springs has a limited, half day program for 4-year-olds, but in another year will offer full day pre-kindergarten classes with a program for even younger children in the same building.

A crowd of community leaders gathered to kick-off a new effort to educate pre-schoolers in Sand Springs.  A new building for the Early Education Center should be finished by fall of 2009, with enough classrooms for 400 children.

The groundbreaking part of it is that all 4-year-olds in Sand Springs will be able to go to school, and "at risk" children younger than three can go too.

"We know that the learning process begins before kids are 5 and they start kindergarten and we want to make sure that every child in Sand Springs is entering kindergarten ready to learn with a solid foundation," said Steven Dow of the Community Action Project.

The cost of the new $12 million building will be shared by the George Kaiser Family Foundation, county taxpayers and school district taxpayers.

With the new building Sand Springs Public Schools to start a full day 4-year-old program for the whole district.

"We've made that a priority in Sand Springs to do that, we think it makes a difference with boys and girls as they go on in their education process to start with a full day in the four year old program," said Debbie Thompson of the Sand Springs School Board.

The start of the new building is also another step in developing new businesses on the site of the current building, which will be demolished next year.

"It's going to free up space in the keystone redevelopment area and allow us to convert that to a new use," said Sand Springs City Manager Doug Enevoldsen.  

The Vision 2025 tax was used to buy the old building and the district will put that money into the new one.  It's set to open in the fall of 2009.

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