Updated: Aug 11
Full-Day Kindergarten for the Greater Sacramento Region
When Alicia and Shon Hatfield were researching kindergarten options in the Rosemont neighborhood of Sacramento for their son Mason, they knew they needed an elementary school that understood their family’s needs. Alicia and Shon wanted a positive school culture and a loving environment with a community feel. But most schools in the area offered half-day kindergarten. As full-time working parents, the logistics of piecing together a three-hour school day plus transportation and after-school care options for Mason and his toddler sister Amyah felt overwhelming. So when her mom told her about a new charter school that had recently opened in the Rosemont area and offered full-day kindergarten, Alicia was all ears.
That new charter school was GPS.
Since our inception in 2017, we have offered full-day TK and kindergarten for working parents in the Sacramento area who want the best educational experience for their children.
Today, both Mason (a 4th grader) and Amyah (a kindergartener), attend GPS. In addition, their aunt, who lives in Elk Grove and works near GPS, drops her three kids off at the Hatfield residence every morning before school. From there, Shon drives the one-mile distance to GPS and drops all five cousins off at the front door. This daily operation has earned the cousins a nickname as “The Posse”. But the family affair doesn’t stop there. Alicia’s sister, Isabella is also a 5th grader at GPS.
Bridging the COVID Learning Gap
The Hatfields have been fans of GPS since the beginning. According to Alicia, “GPS does such a great job with the content. They present it in a way that makes our kids excited to come home and share what they’ve learned with us.”
But Alicia is particularly grateful for the transformation she has seen in Amyah during her kindergarten year. While Mason attended preschool, Amyah did not attend preschool due to COVID. She went through her preschool years without the same opportunities to learn consistently in a social environment. “When Amyah came to GPS, we knew she would have a huge learning curve. We did our best during COVID, but with both of us working full-time and juggling home school for Mason, Amyah missed some of the fundamentals we would have liked her to learn. Thanks to the amazing relationship she has with her kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Petersen–who was also Mason’s teacher–today Amyah is thriving.
Building Student/Teacher Rapport
Shon loves that “Mrs. Petersen is really personable with all the kids, and always finds time to build a relationship with each child. She knows Amyah, how she acts, and how she learns. And it’s the same with the other children. She finds her own niche with each child and builds from there. She knows the kids inside and out and cares about their well-being overall. This shows in her communication with us, which is never just focused on what our kids are or aren’t doing academically. She’s also interested in what’s happening emotionally. Mrs. Petersen understands all the facets of their personality of our kids, what may be getting in the way, and how to support them.”
“Mrs. Petersen has all these different stations inside the classroom that the children rotate through,” Alicia notes. “Each station is for developing a specific skill. Amyah comes home happy every day. No kidding. She never has a bad day at GPS. Sometimes when she gets home, she exclaims, ‘Mom, I had such a good day today!’ Reading is currently her favorite thing. And Mrs. Petersen does a great job of making learning fun. When I was a kid, I don’t remember ever being excited about school. So this love of learning Amyah is bringing home has really caught my attention. Plus, she’s so excited about moving onto 1st grade, which tells me Mrs. Petersen is doing a great job of preparing her students for the next level.”
Other Benefits of Full-Day Kindergarten
The Hatfields recommend GPS and full-day kindergarten. “Full-day kindergarten helps kids get into that routine and prepare them for the rest of their educational career. I also really think the additional time and focus with their teachers makes the full-day kindergarten an attractive option. At this age, kids are ready to learn in a social environment. Since Amyah didn’t have a lot of socialization during COVID, it’s been a big benefit to be with the kids for an extended time every day. It has helped her develop her social skills and grow academically.”
Enroll in GPS Full-Day Kindergarten Today
Want a young person you care about to attend GPS? Reach out today to enroll for the upcoming school year.