AHPS 2023-2024 Kindergarten Orientation Scheduled For April 20

AHPS 2023-2024 Kindergarten Orientation Scheduled For April 20
Posted on 04/06/2023

LOW MOOR — Alleghany Highlands Public Schools elementary schools will hold orientations on Thursday, April 20, to begin registering kindergarten students for the 2023-2024 school year. The orientations will be held at each elementary school from 5:30 to 7 p.m.

Some elementary school attendance zones will change as a result of redistricting proposals being considered by the school board. The plan under consideration was discussed by the board during a called meeting on Thursday, April 6. Before any plan is finalized, a public hearing will be held on April 17, during the monthly business meeting. The meeting will be held at 6 p.m. at the school board’s central office complex in Low Moor. 

Redistricting is necessary due to the consolidation of AHPS schools in the fall. Redistricting will enable the school division to more efficiently provide transportation and other services to students. No elementary schools will close as a result of redistricting.

An outline of the redistricting proposal is attached to provide parents with guidance on where to take their child on April 20 for kindergarten orientations. The attachment is available by following this link. Parents with questions should contact the elementary school that currently serves their neighborhood.

Kindergarten orientations are designed for parents to enroll their children by completing important registration and health history paperwork. Parents should bring the student’s birth certificate, a current immunization record, Social Security number, and preschool physical documentation if they have already had a physical.      

Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI) preschool registrations would begin soon thereafter. The school division will announce the date and times after they are finalized.  

Starting with the 2023-2024 school year, Alleghany Highlands Public Schools will no longer offer a two-tiered Junior Kindergarten/Kindergarten option for students who turn five between Oct. 1 and Dec. 31, 2023.  Instead, the school division will offer preschool for 4 year olds that fall under the Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI) criteria.  

Parents of students who turn four prior to Sept. 30, 2023, may apply for the student to be entered into the VPI programs at each elementary school as a form of preschool/pre-kindergarten instruction. Eligibility and acceptance into the program will be based on a variety of factors, including income/financial verification, family/situational factors, and identified local criteria.

Enrollments will be accepted on a first-come, first-served basis for eligible students, based on staffing availability.

AHPS is making the transition to the PreK/VPI program to provide stability in licensed staffing and maintain an 18:1 teacher/student ratio with a paraprofessional in the classroom. Maintaining a low teacher/studio ratio will provide students with high-quality daily interactions with school staff in areas of activity. AHPS instructors work to develop the whole child with art, music, physical education, and social/emotional learning sessions through programs such as Character Counts.

“There is always a conversation about expanding preschool opportunities at the state and federal level, and AHPS is seeking to be proactive and provide opportunities for young children.  We appreciate all of the work in our community surrounding preschool efforts by a variety of organizations,” said Sherman Callahan, director of elementary education for AHPS. 

The model closely resembles the practices of the former Covington City Public Schools.  

For more information about enrolling students in the PreK/VPI program for 2023-2024, parents should pay attention to media releases for further information on the registration process.

The Alleghany Highlands Public Schools Division was created through the July 1, 2022, merger of Allegany County Public Schools, Covington City Public Schools, and Jackson River Technical Center. The school division, which serves approximately 2,700 students, is jointly funded by Alleghany County and the City of Covington. 

School division news and events are regularly posted on Facebook at AHPublicSchools. The division website can be visited at ahps.k12.va.us.

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