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Early Learning

About Early Learning

Early Learning Department

About Us

Research has firmly established that investing in early learning yields powerful benefits for children; both in early elementary and in as a cornerstone to their overall educational success. Yet it is not enough to provide quality education for a year or two in a child’s early years.

Our Vision

Every child will experience a quality, cohesive and joyful learning experience from Preschool through fifth grade that will provide the strong foundation needed to succeed in school and life. Children are in classrooms with a positive climate and with teachers who are ready and able to meet their individual needs by articulating and implementing high quality early learning environments and instruction.

Who we serve

Seattle Public Schools Early Learning department serves three main constituencies:

  • Families of children ages 3 through 8
  • Teachers of these children
  • Community organizations

Family Engagement

Through enrollment outreach events held in different Seattle neighborhood schools each fall, Early Learning staff work to promote smooth and predictable transitions for young children beginning their school careers.

For a week in late August, the majority of Seattle elementary and K-8 schools participate in Jump Start, a transition-to-Kindergarten experience that helps ease fears and acclimate children to the routines and features of their new school.

During the first three days of school, Family Connection conferences are scheduled at schools to foster positive relationships between Preschool and Kindergarten teachers and families, and allow staff to learn about new students from those who know them best.

Supporting Teachers

Early Learning offers Professional Development to our educators and coaching supports to plan and coordinate high quality learning experiences for new and returning preschool teachers.

We provide professional development that serves to develop teacher capacity to meet the needs of all students, and to align instruction across preschool programs and upward through elementary school.

Professional development opportunities focus foremost on culturally responsive, anti-biased, inclusive education and learning approaches, as well as aligned Social-Emotional Learning, Early Literacy, Math, Science, Early Learning Fitness, and Arts education.

Collaborating with Community Partners

Community and governmental agencies are critical partners in the education of our children. To facilitate successful partnerships that will build to commonly shared goals for students’ academic and personal growth, SPS Early Learning staff lead a monthly Learning Partners Group and offer training opportunities to community based providers.

Both initiatives are geared toward building collective understanding of high quality P-3 instruction and alignment across District, community and governmental entities so that students benefit from cohesive education both in and outside of the classroom.