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SOAR Transitional Kindergarten


A flyer for a program called "SOAR" which is a transitional kindergarten program in Joplin Schools.


Students will be screened for eligibility during the regular kindergarten enrollment and screening process.
For details about how to begin that process, please visit our Kindergarten Enrollment page.

SOAR Transitional Kindergarten FAQs

  • SOAR students will be moved into their home schools for kindergarten. Joplin Schools permitting policy (see above) will also apply in this situation. will apply in these situations.

  • No. The SOAR curriculum is not the same as the kindergarten curriculum. Therefore, moving your child halfway through the year would create a learning gap which runs the risk of putting your child behind. We ask that SOAR families will commit to the full year, and transition to kindergarten the following year.

  • Students must first be screened for kindergarten to determine eligibility for this program. SOAR is a select opportunity for only 15 students in each of our three middle school feeder zones. The families of eligible students will be contacted to be offered enrollment in May/June.

  • SOAR does not replace traditional Kindergarten. Instead, it builds a bridge between early childhood programs and Kindergarten. After completing one year of SOAR, students will be placed in traditional kindergarten classes.

  • No. Joplin Schools provides no-cost education to all students in all programs district-wide. A school supply list will be provided for parents to fulfill, just as in all other grade levels in Joplin Schools.

  • Joplin Schools will not provide specific routes for students in the SOAR program. However, if a bus in your neighborhood feeds into a SOAR location, you may opt to have your child ride those pre-existing routes.

  • Yes. SOAR will operate on the same schedule as a traditional kindergarten classroom. SOAR kids will be in school for the same hours of the day alongside their elementary peers.

  • A certified Joplin Schools kindergarten teacher.

  • Students will be introduced to typical kindergarten skills including letters, numbers, early literacy and more, in a play-based, small-group setting that fosters cooperation, self-control, fine motor skills, emotional maturity and group activities.

  • No. SOAR is a voluntary program that offers the gift of time and experience for students to reach their full potential. If your child was selected, it's because we think they will benefit from this particular opportunity, but it is not a required enrollment. If this program does not meet your needs, your child will be enrolled in Joplin Schools kindergarten.

  • No, it means that based on the results of kindergarten screening, your child may benefit from additional time to prepare for the academic rigors of kindergarten. Students with late birthdays and/or no previous early learning experience are often the best candidates for SOAR. SOAR is not remedial in nature, but students who enter kindergarten following a year of transitional kindergarten are generally more likely to perform at the top of their class.

  • Joplin Schools permitting policy will apply in these situations. You may fill out a permit application to allow your children to attend the same school. However, those decisions are based on enrollment numbers and may or may not be granted by the school. Principals make those decisions one week prior to the start of school.