Libraries play a critical role in the kindergarten readiness and transition process. They promote early literacy and kindergarten readiness skills in programming, encourage family engagement, and help children learn (when a parent, guardian or formal preschool is not present). They also serve as key liaisons to underserved populations during this milestone transition.
The Allegheny County Library Association has received generous funding from a legislative grant to take full advantage of these opportunities. The funds will underwrite professional development and resources for libraries with three goals:
- To equip library staff with an understanding of child development and early literacy needs.
- To train library staff to build kindergarten readiness skills through their programming.
- To foster stronger collaboration between schools and public libraries.
Education sessions in partnership with the Carnegie Science Center, Pittsburgh Cultural Trust – Gateway to the Arts, Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children (PAEYC) and the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh, will provide library staff the opportunity to learn about STEM, arts and child development. In addition, there will be quarterly meetings focused on kindergarten readiness topics. All libraries will be encouraged to participate on their local kindergarten transition team hosted by their school district.