While I just got to reading Nov. 1's paper, I was surprised that Jacob Johnson, a candidate for District 91's school board, would be so uninformed on a topic such as early education to call the practice of all-day kindergarten "free daycare." He cites Siebersma, Gates, & Colich (2014) as conclusive evidence that the achievement of full-day kindergartners is lost by third grade.

For those who would read the article, the authors actually celebrate full-day kindergarten as a powerful asset, especially for students who begin school without reading or math skills. The authors also stated the importance of providing additional supports for poor and disadvantaged students when schools use half-day kindergarten, a pillar lacking in Johnson's platform. The Bernstein article cited by Johnson was also mischaracterized, as Bernstein (2018) recognizes that "early years in education are critical." He goes on to state that the nature of today's families, where both parents work to provide income, makes full-day kindergarten a definite benefit for working families.

Bernstein draws no conclusion regarding harm caused to children because of full-day kindergarten as Johnson would suggest. 

Edmond Walsh

Idaho Falls