Pocahontas County Schools to hold Early Childhood Fair for Preschool Registration

The Pocahontas County Preschool Collaborative Preschool Registration is now open until May 1st. The Annual Early Childhood Fair is at Pocahontas County High School on April 8, 2017 from 9:00 AM to 3:00 PM.

Ruth Bland, a Director at the Pocahontas County Schools tells us about the Early Childhood Fair and about Preschool.

“The Pocahontas County Board of Education has a collaborative Preschool Program that’s been in existence for over 20 years now” Mrs. Bland said. “Children who are 4 (years old) before September 1st have the option of attending Preschool at four sites here in Pocahontas County: Hillsboro Elementary’ Marlinton Elementary; Green Bank Elementary-Middle School; and School Days Child Care has a public school Preschool inside of their building. So, every spring we begin a registration process that parents who wish for their children to attend Preschool can apply. We usually do an Early Childhood Fair, and this year it will be April 8th from 9 to 3 at Pocahontas County High School, where the parents can come in, register their child for Preschool and then they can also get Well Child Exams, immunizations and dental screens from Community Care of West Virginia.”

Ruth points out that there are a few things parents should bring with them to the Fair.

“It is recommended they get an application packet from any of those four sites, or they can get an application packet here at the Pocahontas County Board of Education Office” said Mrs. Bland. “They need to have a certificate of live birth, the record of the child’s immunizations and if they already have a Well Child examination. Which is good for a year, they can produce it. And they need a dental screen and in three of the four sites we have Head Start, so if they want to get the services of Head Start, they need to bring income verification for Head Start qualification.

We do accept children at three years of age if they do have a developmental delay, so if a parent believes that their child is not where they should be developmentally in speech, in fine motor, in personal social growth, gross motor skills or in the cognitive area, then they can contact one of our instructors within the school and the child can be evaluated, and they could possibly be in Preschool for two years.”

We asked Mrs. Bland to tell us why Preschool is a good idea.

“When children attend Preschool in Pocahontas County, they are exposed to the Creative Curriculum. Which is an academic curriculum that is imbedded in play” said Mrs. Bland. “So when the children come, they are in structured play environments for gross motor skills, fine motor skills, science, mathematics, reading and language arts. They are learning how to work together, share together, play together, at the same time being enriched with all kinds of academic activities. Studies show they do better academically; they do better socially adjusting, and acclimating to the school environment so that Kindergarten entry is not as traumatic.

Now I tell you what! Even if parents choose not to send their children to Preschool, if they are reading to their children; really talking to their children –not talking at their children, but engaging them in conversation; engaging them in good language activities; counting with them; identifying letters, sounds (and) numbers, all of those children, when they are exposed to that rich language environment that families do, they do better in school. Put them on your lap and read to them all the time. You cannot believe how that changes children’s abilities to be successful in school.”

Again, Preschool registration began on March 23rd and lasts until May 1st. You can register and receive the required Well Child Exam, immunizations and dental screenings at the Early Childhood Fair held at the High School on April 8th from 9:00 to 3:00.

Story By

Tim Walker

Tim is the WVMR News Reporter. Tim is a native of Maryland who started coming to Pocahontas County in the 1970’s as a caver. He bought land on Droop Mountain off Jacox Road in 1976 and built a small house there in the early 80’s. While still working in Maryland, Tim spent much time at his place which is located on the Friars Hole Cave Preserve. Retiring in 2011 as a Lieutenant with the Anne Arundel County Police Department in Maryland, Tim finally took the plunge and moved from Maryland to his real home on Droop Mountain. He began working as the Pocahontas County Reporter for Allegheny Mountain Radio in January of 2015.

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