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Update on Santa Barbara Unified's Universal Transitional Kindergarten Program

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Posted at 2:50 PM, Apr 17, 2023

Santa Barbara Unified presented efforts around kindergarten readiness at a Board of Trustees meeting on Tuesday, April 11.

At the meeting, district staff discussed Kindergarten Student Entrance Profile (KSEP) data results for 2022-2023, as well as updates on Universal Transitional Kindergarten (TK).

Students must be socially, emotionally and cognitively ready to participate fully and access the curriculum to be ready for kindergarten.

Kindergarten readiness in Santa Barbara Unified is at 40% and Santa Barbara County is at 25%, according to the 2022-2023 KSEP Total Readiness Data.

Santa Barbara County has set a goal for 75% of students to be ready for school by 2030.

Universal Transitional Kindergarten will help ensure students are ready to go.

Right now, 137 students are enrolled in TK at all nine of the district’s elementary schools.

Next school year enrollment is up to 155 students and is expected to rise as we get closer to August.

“Students must build a strong foundation of learning to be successful in school,” Superintendent Dr. Hilda Maldonado said. “Transitional Kindergarten is a critical tool for ensuring all students have access to the knowledge and socio-emotional skills needed in the classroom. Santa Barbara Unified looks forward to continuing to build this program up.”

By the 2025 - 2026 school year, every four-year-old will be eligible to enroll in Transitional Kindergarten.