Knox Elementary School to Add Second Kindergarten Countdown Camp


Knox Elementary School will be able to expand this year’s Kindergarten Countdown, thanks to some help from the local community. Director of Curriculum and Instruction Peggy Shidaker told the school board Monday that the program typically helps students with no preschool experience adjust to kindergarten.

She explained that the Kindergarten Countdown began as a grant from IU Health, and the program has since been taken over by United Way organizations. “This year, the most they would give was $3,000, but the Starke County Community Foundation, once again, has stepped in to provide the rest of the funds for a camp of 20 students,” she said. “Well, good news: a generous person in our community has donated another $6,000, $7,000, whatever we need to have a second camp.”

While the first camp will be made up of students with no preschool experience, Shidaker said the second one will be for children who’ve been to preschool but are still struggling. Kim Ray and Meda Sullivan will each teach a Kindergarten Countdown class, with Kathleen Hale and Rhonda Lovely serving as aides, following the school board’s approval Monday.