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BCSD Public Pre-School starting 2019-2020 School Year

Bowman County Public School, School of Promise and Tot Lot Pre-School consolidate programs

The Bowman County Public School, School of Promise and Tot Lot Preschool want to collectively announce a change in preschool in our communities.

By Stacy McGee
Justin Abrahamson
Jettie Swanson

The Bowman County School District greatly appreciates and respects the School of Promise and Tot Lot Childcare for providing Preschool education in our communities in the past. To meet the needs of the ever changing climate of education and to serve more kids in our community, we will be consolidating these Preschool programs and offering Bowman County School District public preschool starting for the 2019-2020 school year.

There is no greater story of education, generosity and community than the story of School of Promise. Parents of special needs children, educators, and generous community members saw a need for the education of special needs children that were not receiving any local education. For over 47 years this amazing community has donated and supported the School of Promise, all in the name of genuine goodness and education. The simple fact that parents and community members took it upon them selves to create a school to fill a need in their community and then for that community to continually donate their time and resources to that vision and need is simply astonishing! The School of Promise has been its own separate 501 3c entity. Bowman County School has been providing some funding and support to the School of Promise and pays dues to West River Special Services. The School of Promise along with West River Special Services served children qualifying for special education services.

After the closing of other private Preschools in Bowman, then Tot Lot Childcare made the change to offer a Pre-School Program to fill a community need for general education Preschool children. Tot Lot Childcare is also a 501 3c entity and they provided students a general education Preschool. Bowman County School as also been providing supplemental funding to the Tot Lot Childcare to support this program in recent years.

In current law at the age of 3, the public school system by law is responsible for the special education students. The School of Promise and West River Special Services has been providing this education to the Special Education in our school district. The Bowman County School District, School of Promise and Tot Lot Childcare, have agreed that is time for all Preschool services in our district be operated by one entity. There are multiple benefits for this decision, but first and foremost it is what is best for our children. Having our Preschoolers start their education in a public school program will provide multiple benefits to our children. Benefits include curriculum alignment with our public schools, continuity in the programming they receive and will use when they get to Kindergarten, special education students will receive important inclusion time with general education students, ELL and Reading Interventionist Services, and program guidance and support from our Bowman County Administration. The public Preschool will be housed in the existing amazing School of Promise facility. Applications are currently being accepted for the para professional position and Bowman County Public School is planning to fill these positions by May 10.

In communities that are so importantly rooted in values and in taking care of their own, change can be hard. Know that the decision to consolidate Preschool was not taken lightly by any of these three entities and has been researched and collaborated with the best interest of the children, the focus of every decision.

Kudos to you community members and organizations for opening your hearts and resources to educate your children. Thank you for your almost five decades of generosity, this type of support and dedication is rare and amazing!

The Bowman County School District is fully committed to providing public Preschool for the future. We are very appreciative of the School of Promise and Tot Lot Boards and Staff for their advice and collaboration in making this change.