TK Advisory Committee
For many districts and County Offices of Education, planning has been led by their TK advisory committee. These advisory committees can be formed at both the district and county levels, and help to guide and assist TK implementation and build partnerships to support your TK program. Below are ideas for building your own advisory committees at both the district and county level, along with some innovative local examples.
TK implementation involves many levels of district operations. A district-level TK advisory committee can help guide a comprehensive approach and ensure critical implementation needs are met. Often, it is the Assistant Superintendent of Instruction in partnership with the Director of Early Childhood Education that lead implementation efforts. However, TK implementation will require every department—communications, business, human resources, facilities, etc.—to take an “all hands on deck” approach for implementation to be successful. Your district might also consider how to engage parents in this process in a meaningful way.
Possible representatives to consider for a district-level TK advisory committee include:
- Preschool Administrators—strongly support the bridge between preschool and kindergarten (e.g. expertise around curriculum, social-emotional development, etc.).
- Principal and Early Elementary Teachers—offer representation and voices from the school sites that will be implementing TK on the ground.
- Union Representation—offers leadership and perspective on how to best match teachers to TK classrooms even during challenging fiscal times.
- Business/Fiscal Team Members—help provide support for initial resources, particularly around program start-up.
- Communications and Enrollment Offices—can help guide enrollment, how to field questions, identify key district contacts for families and plan outreach strategies.
- Other representation includes research/evaluation/demographer, executive leadership, administrators who guide facilities opportunities, special education and afterschool providers.
For recommendations, see Suggestions for Building an Advisory Committee to Support Transitional Kindergarten.1
County-level TK advisory committees, often led by the local County Office of Education, have been a helpful way for districts to support each other and share ideas and resources across their local county. Some convene as part of the county-level assistant superintendent meetings for strategic vision and planning, while others have scheduled specific monthly advisory committee meetings for administrators leading implementation and teachers. For more suggestions on building a county-level advisory committee, see Suggestions for Building an Advisory Committee to Support Transitional Kindergarten Implementation. Also, members of the School Readiness Subcommittee who sit on CCSESA's Curriculum and Instruction Steering Committee (CISC), have been very helpful to TK implementation efforts. See the CISC School Readiness Subcommittee contact list below.
Example: Fresno County Office of Education
- Convened a monthly TK Steering Committee consisting of school district personnel and representatives from the Early Care and Education Community, and higher education. This group guided the TK Professional Learning Community (PLC).
- Initially the TK PLC consisted of administrators from small, medium and large school districts in rural and urban areas to circulate information about the Kindergarten Readiness Act. Over time as the district understood more the role of the administration regarding TK, the PLC evolved to address the quality classroom components that involved the county’s TK teachers. Currently, the PLC meets monthly and visits a model TK classroom followed by a round table discussion surrounding curriculum, room environment and other TK questions teachers and/or administrators may have. Districts cover the half day sub-time needed for teachers to participate.
- Established a partnership with California State University, Fresno, 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.
- Hosted two regional summits and offered professional development on TK to support Central Valley school districts in their planning.
- Developed a comprehensive listserv that included all 32 school districts within the county to keep them up to date with the latest TK development, resources and professional development opportunities.
- Worked closely with the Packard Foundation, Preschool California and other statewide TK early implementers to assist in the development of a successful TK launch and to provide quality programs across the state.
For more information on TK in Fresno County, including videos of trainings, please visit www.fcoe.org/transitionalkindergarten.
Example: Santa Clara County Office of Education
- Provides leadership on statewide TK strategic planning and implementation work, and has embedded TK as a key component for preschool (or birth) through third grade efforts.
- Established the Santa Clara County TK Steering Advisory Committee, comprised of Assistant Superintendents, Directors of Curriculum and Instruction and Early Childhood Education Administrators (of districts that operate preschool programs), which meets monthly to provide support to districts in their TK planning and implementation efforts. All work is done collaboratively between the early learning and K-12 departments within the office.
- Has offered summits and professional development for TK, K and preschool teachers and administrators in the county and region, and has extensively supported two local districts in their planning and implementation of TK.
- Included TK implementation planning and updates as part of the monthly County Level Assistant Superintendent Meetings. Also, arranged site visits to districts with programs serving children eligible for TK.
- Developed a “bucket list” or quarterly planning template, of key categories to guide districts to think about the many elements to consider in their strategic planning for TK as well as several resources for local districts, many of which are available on the TK digital library.
For more information on TK in Santa Clara County, visit www.sccoe.org/depts/preschool/transitional_kindergarten.
CISC School Readiness Subcommittee
Members of CCSESA's CISC School Readiness subcommittee are among the many leaders that have been very helpful in TK implementation efforts across the state. In your search for partnerships and support in your region, consider reaching out to the following leaders:
| Regional Members
|3||Natalie Woods Andrews
|4||Pamela Comfort||Contra Costafirstname.lastname@example.org|
|5||Lisa Kaufman||Santa Claraemail@example.com|
|6||Kim Ott||San Joaquinfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|11||Judy Sanchez||Los Angelesemail@example.com|
*Updated June, 2015
1 The material above is adapted from Suggestions for Building an Advisory Committee to Support Transitional Kindergarten. Santa Clara County Office of Education & Preschool California 2012.