Red Deer Public Schools offers developmentally appropriate, educationally based programming for children aged 3 and 4 identified as having mild, moderate or severe delays. Limited spaces are available for children who have no or few English language skills ( ESL) or children who don't have delays but have been recommended by a community agency or professional. Preference will be given to Pre-Kindergarten children who are residents of the City of Red Deer.
All Pre-Kindergarten Programs include:
- Certified teacher
- Learning through play
- Literacy-rich environment
- Family oriented programming
- Multi-disciplinary services that include: Early Learning Consultant, Speech Language Pathologist, Occupational Therapist, Physical Therapist, Psychologist, Behavioural Specialist.
- Half day programming (am or pm) 4 days a week. No school on Fridays.
- Small class settings with low adult/child ratio
- Individualized programming
Pre-Kindergarten Programming provides early intervention that allows young children to:
- Enhance communication skills
- Develop social and emotional skills
- Develop fine and gross motor skills
- Foster creative and cognitive development through a variety of firsthand experiences
- Develop greater independence and problem solving skills
How do I start?
- Pick up application form at your neighbourhood public school or click here for a pdf version
- If you have questions, talk to your local public school Principal or Vice Principal.
- Return completed application package no later than March 18 (earlier if possible).
- If your child has not been assessed by a community professional, you will be contacted to make an appointment to do initial screening to assess whether your child requires more formal assessment, and is eligible for the Program.
- Families will be contacted to confirm process of application by the end of May (earlier when possible).
Will Pre-Kindergarten be at My Neighbourhood Public School?
Currently Pre-Kindergarten programs are located at:
- Fairview Elementary School
- G.H. Dawe Pre-K - 8
- Grandview Elementary School
- G.W. Smith Elementary School
- Joseph Welsh Elementary
- Normandeau School
- West Park Elementary School
Parents are responsible for transporting their child to and from the program. For more information, contact Transportation at 403-342-3724 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Alberta Government Links:
Early Childhood Services Fact Sheet
Talking is Key
Contact : Please contact schools directly or call Student Services 403-342-3703 or www.rdpsd.ab.ca
Education Programs for Young Children with Special Needs
What is Program Unit Funding?
- Additional funding provided by Alberta Learning to approved Early Childhood Services* operators.
- Available for eligible children with severe disabilities between the ages of 2 1/2 to 6 years.
- Available for a maximum of 3 consecutive years.
- Provided for children who require additional support beyond that offered in a regular program.
- Generally covers the costs of necessary additional supports.
- Requires that an Individualized Program Plan be developed each year the child accesses PUF.
- Allows for children to be supported in a setting that best meets their educational needs.
* Early childhood Services refers to the broad, coordinated system of local and provincial programs that meet the developmental and special needs of young children and their families. Click here for the AB ED fact sheets
When should I be concerned about my child's development?
You may wish to make an appointment with a pediatrician, health-care professional, speech-language pathologist or psychologist if your child experiences any of the following:
- Has a physical disability of medical condition.
- Is very hard to understand, especially to people who are not familiar to him/her.
- Ignores your voice when you are not facing one another.
- Isn't learning new words as quickly as most children his/her age.
- Gets very close to things he wants to see.
- Bumps into things.
- Has difficulty holding and using a cup, spoon, or toys.
- Seems to be in his/her "own little world" and doesn't interact or play with others.
- Is unusually aggressive with brothers or sisters, pets, or peers.
- Often seems to forget what he/she has been asked to do.
- Is unable to sit still, even for short periods of time.
* All children show these behaviours some of the time. If any of these behaviours persist over a long period of time, and if they are combined with other concerns you have, it would be advisable to investigate further. Your child MAY qualify for PUF or mild/moderate services in the educational system.
What disabilities would my child need to have in order to be PUF eligible?
- Speech and language delays
- Vision impairment
- Hearing impairment
- Severe behavioural or emotional difficulties
- Physical disability
- Medical concerns
- Significant developmental delays
Will my child receive therapy through PUF?
Yes, therapists and other outside professionals may be contracted for consultation to staff and to you, within the education setting. The supports available to us include:
- START Program. A support team for assessment, consultation and/or direct therapy for children with severe special needs.
- Speech pathologists, therapists and psychologists in private practice. Individualized consultation and/or direct service to staff and parents is available.
- Red Deer Children's Services Centre. A team who offer a transdisciplinary assessment and consultation service to children , their families, and schools.
- REACH Educational Consulting Services. A team encompassing a range of professionals who provide services to children with complex educational needs.