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Mounds View offers free bus service for all-day kindergartners

  • Blog Post by: Shannon Prather
  • February 14, 2014 - 2:00 PM

Children attending Mounds View Schools’ new kindergarten centers next year will receive free door-to-door bus service.

District officials announced the perk to parents at its 2014-15 kindergarten roundups this month.

The Mounds View School Board voted to take kindergarten classes out of the elementary schools and open centers to accommodate new state-funded all-day kindergarten, which will be free for families starting next fall. Currently, half-day kindergarten is free in the district, but families must pay for full day.

Many of the district’s elementary schools are at capacity, so moving the anticipated 750 kindergartners to two specialized schools to be located at the Snail Lake and Pike Lake education centers will create space for more kids.

While that may help solve a problem for the district, for families with multiple school-age children, the thought of another drop-off and pickup point created some worries.

“There are some parents who are anxious about how it’s going to work having kids in a different location. It gets complicated,” said district spokesman Colin Sokolowski. “We are waiving all bus fees (for all-day kindergartners). It makes life easier for everyone.”

Currently, families of students who live within two miles of their school must pay for bus service. Also, children are not offered door-to-door service. They must wait at neighborhood stops.

Mounds View Schools enrolls 10,000 students in northern Ramsey County.

© 2014 Star Tribune