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News Item: Homepage

Preschool Program Thrives at Bobier

by Michelle Sybert


“I’m making ice cream,” Andrea exclaims as she plies the soft playdough in her hands and molds it into a plastic cup. Andrea is one of the dozens of children who attends a part-day preschool at Bobier Elementary School in Vista, California.


Vista Unified School District continues to be strongly committed to providing children access to critical early childhood education programs so that they can acquire the foundational level skills needed to be successful students and thriving community members. Bobier Elementary is an example of that commitment in action.


The preschool located within Bobier is one of 11 North County San Diego locations under the umbrella of Educational Enrichment Systems (EES) that provides at-risk children the opportunity to grow and learn in a safe, nurturing environment.


Preschool student Andrea molds play dough into ice cream at the EES preschool hosted at Bobier Elementary.


“We are always trying to promote access to the program in any way we can because we know how valuable the preschool experience is to our kids,” says Dr. Jenifer Gordon, principal at Bobier Elementary.


Community members are given access to and made aware of the benefits of early education through prominent signage, postcard mailers, partnerships with community clinics, social media, letters to current parents, and word of mouth. Students are selected for the program based on a variety of factors, including financial need.


Dr. Golden has been the Principal at Bobier for three years, and in that time she has seen a jump in desire for the program from interested parents. It’s easy to see why. The partnership is a win-win for both EES and the elementary school.


“I love that we have a partnership with EES,” says Golden. “We have seen that most of our students are more kinder-ready when they enter kindergarten as a result of the preschool program. It’s our goal to close the achievement gap and give all of our students the same resources and opportunities as other children in potentially more affluent areas.”


Dr. Golden sees how the EES program also benefits the whole family.


“At our school, we have seen a lot of parents coming in with younger siblings,” says Golden. “We are constantly reaching out, letting them know that we have a preschool program through our partnership with EES.”


“There is just this sigh of relief,” she says, “when parents find out they qualify for the preschool, and then the preschoolers are so excited when they learn that they will be on the same campus as their brother or sister.”


“One of the other things I love about having the EES program” Golden shares, “is that it allows our parents time with the parent liaison on campus. Parents can attend workshops and have time to get their needs and concerns met.”


Golden also meets with Anamaria Zamudio, the EES on-site preschool director for Bobier Elementary, once a month to assess student progress and goals of the program. The partnership between EES and Bobier allows access to the students in preschool so that teachers can target the skills needed for kindergarten readiness. As a result, interventions, if needed, are in place before a child’s first day in elementary school.


Anamaria Zamudio, EES preschool director at Bobier Elementary (left), and Bobier Principal Dr. Jenifer Golden


Parental involvement is an essential component to the program. Each parent is required to volunteer in their child’s classroom during the school year. That involvement has a positive impact on the children says Director Zamudio. “Having the parents volunteer at school, children feel more motivated and excited to come to school. When children see their parents being involved in their classroom activities they feel more comfortable and secure about themselves. They also connect home with school when they see their parents being part of the school routines and rules.


Parent involvement in the preschool also has a ripple effect on the culture of the elementary school. PTA membership at Bobier is currently at 250 members, up from just five the first year Golden was principal.


Posted by: Lisa Contreras, District Admin, Vista Unified School District Published:11/27/17
Audience: Homepage and Homepage