The Calvary Baptist Pre School, under the administration of the Calvary Baptist Community Center, Inc. has completed its 44th year of providing a quality start to life long learning for young children, setting a firm foundation, and enabling their parents to be gainfully employed. About 16 years ago, Calvary entered into agreement with the Paterson Public School District to provide pre school services for 3 and 4 year olds as required by the Abbott Law and the “No Child Left Behind” Policy.
According to the agreement between the Calvary Baptist Community Center, Inc. and the Early Childhood Department of the Paterson Public School District, funding is provided for 135 children 3 and 4 years of age, nine classes with maximum enrollment of 135 children. The school day for preschoolers is 7 hours. Those participating in extended day services sponsored by the Department of Human Services may participate as early as 7:00am and remain as late as 5:00pm. Children may remain with Calvary’s Pre School for a maximum of two years before moving on to kindergarten.
The Pre School follows the Creative Curriculum. Curriculum emphasizes social, emotional, physical and cognitive development. The academic component stresses the development of literacy and cognitive skills. Lesson are designed to have children actively and interactively engaged. Children participate in a wide variety of cultural programs, activities and projects that support the curriculum. Children are assessed four times a year using the Teaching Strategies Gold Assessment System. The curriculum includes strong components that help with social, emotional and physical development.
There are 30 members of the pre school staff: nine bachelor / masters degree teachers with standard state certification; eleven instructional assistants; two family workers; plus office, service and administrative staff. All teaching staff members are required to regularly participate in professional development opportunities and activities provided by Calvary and the Department of Early Childhood Education. A certified nurse, (RN), provides medical / health services to all children.
Parents are actively involved in the education of their children. The Pre School PTA is active and meets four times each year addressing issues including workshops, speakers and activities as parenting issues, school policies and guidelines, and the curriculum. Family Workers make regular contact with the parents in the home. Parents and community members volunteer in the school regularly. Bilingual services are provided for children and parents.
All participants receive a full, wholesome breakfast and lunch and an afternoon snack daily. All meals are prepared in Calvary’s Kitchen by Pre School cooks. The meal program is sponsored by the Child and Adult Care Food Program. No one is discriminated against because of sex, race, religion, color national origin, age or disability. Alternative meals are provided for those children with specific identified food allergies.
Emphasis is placed on partnering with community groups and programs: Paterson Community Health Center, Paterson Department of Health, Public Library, Fire Department, nearby fruit and vegetable farms, the Farmers Market, etc. All classes participate in many and varied field trips and assembly programs for learning and fun.
The curriculum is extended by having children participate in a wide range of fieldtrips. Daily each class engages is gross motor (physical) activities using our state of the art playground and Fellowship Hall. All classes are equipped with computers: desk top and I-pads for the use of each child and teachers. Calvary Baptist Pre-School is a nationally accredited school. The school was initially accredited in 2010 by the National Association for the Education of Young Children, NAEYC. Five year re-certification was awarded August 2015. Accreditation is updated annually.