News Column

EDITORIAL: Helpful head start

August 4, 2014

The York Dispatch, Pa.

Aug. 04--Thumps up: The Strand-Capitol Performing Arts Center, the United Way of York County and PNC are teaming up this week to help parents prepare their pre-schoolers for kindergarten.

The "Ready for School & Life Mobile Learning Adventure: The Learning is All Around Me" is a two-day event at the Strand is geared toward children up to age 5, said Nicole Shaffer, director of marketing and communications for the United Way of York County.

One of the main goals is to give parents examples of activities that will prepare children to start school, she said.

Kiosks set up Tuesday and Wednesday will include educational topics in the form of games, Shaffer said, including activities that have children matching colors, identifying letters and recognizing patterns, among other things.

About 500 students from local early education centers will go through the stations.

Shaffer said research shows students who weren't in a pre-school program often enter kindergarten 30 percent behind students who did. York offers many programs at little to no cost to families, and information will be available at the event for parents who want to enroll their children but aren't sure of the process, she said.

Thumbs up: To all those who will stand shoulder to shoulder with law enforcement Tuesday during National Night Out.

The nationwide event seeks to raise awareness about crime prevention and strengthen partnerships between police and communities. Residents are encouraged to turn their porch lights on and gather outside to show solidarity against crime.

Some local police departments also host community gatherings, which have been getting bigger and more extravagant in recent years.

York Area Regional Police, for instance, is holding a large-scale event the Dallastown Community Park, just off South School Place from 5 to 8:30 p.m., said Sgt. Pete Montgomery.

Highlights include a police motorcycle demonstration at 6 p.m., bounce houses, an inflatable obstacle course and a gaming truck, where younger attendees can play video games.

Northern York County Regional Police will meet community members at the Union Fire and Hose Co., 30 E. Canal St. in Dover from 6 to 9 p.m.

During the event, officers will prepare and serve hamburgers and hot dogs and there will be carnival-style games, a bounce house, a dunk tank that will feature state Rep. Seth Grove, R-Dover Township and officers on the hot seat and more.

If you can't make it to either of these or one of the other local National Night Out events, be sure to turn your porch light on Tuesday night to show support.


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Source: York Dispatch, The (PA)

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