Parents asked to pay for public kindergarten in West Valley
YAKIMA, Wash- The West Valley School District is asking parents to pay tuition for some public school. The district sent a letter to parents saying the district can no longer afford to offer free full-day kindergarten.
So they are proposing a program where parents pay for the full day on a sliding fee scale depending on their income. They estimate it would cost about $350-$500 dollars a month.
The state only funds half day kindergarten, and for the last two years the west valley school district has been paying for the other half. But because of state budget cuts, they say they can't absorb that cost on their own.
"It's difficult for districts to do that on their own. The only real source of money they have is their local levy and that gets spread pretty thin", says Peter Ansingh the superintendent of the West Valley School District.
Parents who don't pay for the full day program can still send their kids to the half-day program for free.