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Full-Day Kindergarten Offers Relief To Families, And Aspen Is Celebrating


Before House Bill 1262 passed a week ago, Colorado only covered about half the cost of full-day kindergarten. Parents and schools made up the difference.  

Starting next year, kindergarten will be entirely funded by the state, and, on Wednesday, the City of Aspen celebrates the move.


Kids First is a City of Aspen department that helps area families pay for early childhood education. They’re hosting the celebration.

Kids First director Shirley Ritter says it costs parents about $2,000 a year for full-day kindergarten at Aspen schools. That number was often much higher for other Colorado districts.


Ritter says the new law levels the playing field for 4- and 5-year-olds in their first year of public education and offers much-needed financial relief for many families.


"The biggest thing I’ve heard since this bill was working its way through the Colorado statehouse was, 'Oh, wow. Oh, my gosh. Do you know how much that would mean to me? That would save me so much money,'" she said.  

Mayor Steve Skadron will speak about the importance of full-day kindergarten at Wednesday’s event, which starts at 4:30 p.m. at the Yellow Brick Park in downtown Aspen.



Contributor Christin Kay is passionate about the rich variety of arts, cultural experiences and stories in the Roaring Fork Valley. She has been a devotee of public radio her whole life. Christin is a veteran of Aspen Public Radio, serving as producer, reporter and interim news director.