District cutting Fours Explore program

Pre-kindergarten program will end at Kenny and Lyndale

Minneapolis Public Schools will cut a pre-kindergarten program offered at Kenny and Lyndale community schools at the end of this school year.

In a letter to parents, Minneapolis Kids Manager Kari Gorr explained that the Fours Explore program repeatedly ran over budget and was facing a projected loss of $50,000 for the current school year. The program, launched in 2004 at Kenny and recently expanded to Lyndale, will end June 4.

Fours Explore is described on the Minneapolis Public Schools website as “an all day, year-before-kindergarten experience for 4-year olds that promotes school readiness.”

According to Gorr’s letter, district staff considered reducing the Fours Explore staff and increasing fees for the program, which currently costs families $46.50 per student per day. But the high demand for the limited classroom space in district schools helped to tip the decision in favor of ending the program.

District spokesperson Larissa Chinwa said Gorr’s letter was mailed both to parents with children already enrolled in Fours Explore and to parents of younger children who had expressed interest in the program.