Under the law, TK is the first year of a two-year kindergarten experience. Therefore your district will receive the same full California Average Daily Attendance (ADA) funding rate for TK students that you receive for all kindergarten students.
For more than half a century, children born in the fall on or before Dec. 2 (i.e., TK-aged children), have been eligible to attend kindergarten in California’s public schools. Under the Kindergarten Readiness Act of 2010, these children born between September and December will continue to be served by the public school system and will be placed in TK classrooms instead of kindergarten classrooms.
In addition to ADA funding, your district may use various types of funding sources to support your TK implementation. Arranging conversations between staff leading TK implementation and your district’s financial managers is a helpful first step in financial planning.
According to School Services of California, “For funding purposes, transitional kindergarten (TK) is kindergarten. Any funding (federal, state, and local) currently provided to local educational agencies (LEAs) to support kindergarten (K) also includes TK pupils.” Please see the chart of additional funding sources below based on material from School Services of California.
Additional Funding Sources
Case-by-Case Enrollment to TK
While the Kindergarten Readiness Act of 2010 established transitional kindergarten for children with fall birthdays, there are cases where school districts and parents agree that even though the child is age-eligible for kindergarten, TK is the best placement for them. For these 5 year old children that would be better served in TK, they may be enrolled in transitional kindergarten on a case-by-case basis, requiring the use of a continuance form to comply with ADA funding requirements.
If the continuance form is needed, parents generally sign the form at the beginning of the year as part of the enrollment process. See sample Kindergarten Continuance Forms in English and other languages.
For more information on kindergarten enrollment, see information from the California Department of Education.
California Transitional Kindergarten Stipend Funds
CDE released award notifications for $15 million in California Transitional Kindergarten Stipend (CTKS) funds for professional development, secured through the 2014-15 state budget. This grant funding is intended to supplement existing efforts and investments to transitional kindergarten teachers and Title 5 California State Preschool Program teachers.
Grantees must use CTKS funds for educational and professional development expenses related to early learning, including 1) stipends for credentialed teachers to complete at least 24 units in early childhood education or child development or both; 2) registration costs; 3) tuition; 4) Continuing Education Units in early childhood education, 5) official transcripts that prove the required accredited college units in early childhood education or child development, or a combination of both; and, 6) books. First priority is given to transitional kindergarten teachers, then preschool teachers.
The stipends will be administered by local planning councils (LPCs)—which plan for child care and development services based on the needs of families in the local community—and funding will be expended by June 2017. Starting immediately, semi-annual reports to CDE are due the end of July and January of each year. Grantees should seek legal counsel to determine safeguards to protect public interest and address potential conflicts of interest.
Find more information on the California Transitional Kindergarten Stipend Program webinar page.
Other Funding & Support
In addition to state and federal funds, districts have used private grants as well as funding and resource partnerships with local County Offices of Education, local First 5 agencies and organizations like DonorsChoose.org. Below are examples of some of these partnerships that your district can use as models.
Fresno County Office of Education & California State University, Fresno
The Fresno County Office of Education established a partnership with California State University, Fresno’s Kremen School of Education and Human Development to develop a TK Boot Camp to address the new Common Core, Preschool Learning Foundations and Curriculum Framework training; schedule options; and curriculum and environment resources. TK teachers participated in this training voluntarily on Friday evenings and Saturdays for three weekends and were offered course units as part of their professional development.
First 5 Los Angeles & DonorsChoose.org
First 5 Los Angeles is continuing its four-year partnership with DonorsChoose.org to “bring donations to preschools and transitional kindergarten classroom projects in Los Angeles County public schools.” This is a four-year partnership to offer “Double Your Impact” matches for projects submitted by preschool, pre-K and transitional kindergarten public school teachers in L.A. County, encouraging donors to fund the first half of projects submitted through DonorsChoose.org. Teachers submitting for donations "may post up to two projects anytime during the 2012-2013 school year, but the offer will only be available until the entire $112,500 in funds allocated to the program are awarded." Learn more at First 5 LA.
First 5 Fresno & Fresno County Office of Education
First 5 Fresno established a TK Special Projects Program to offer one-time grants as part of its Community Grants Program in partnership with Fresno County Office of Education. As written in the First 5 Fresno grant application, “The program was established to support Fresno County school districts implementing transitional kindergarten in the 2011/2012 school year with ongoing technical assistance and professional development through the Fresno County Office of Education and financial support for supplies, materials, curriculum, etc. through the Commission.”
First 5 Shasta
First 5 Shasta County's commitment to supporting the learning experiences of young children led it to establish a Special Opportunity Grant for the 2011-12 academic year. First 5 Shasta allotted $103,500 for grant funds, offering grants that range from $5,000 – $30,000, to support elementary school districts and charter schools implementing transitional kindergarten.
Univision and Telemundo Los Angeles
Univision-KMEX Los Angeles and Telemundo have partnered with Los Angeles Unified School District to offer informational and news segments on TK to support parent outreach and recruitment. Please see example news segment from Telemundo Los Angeles.