Preschool

Administration
Mrs. Vicki Pede - Superintendent
Mr. Michael McKeown - Principal
Preschool Teacher
Mrs. Lisa Moro Zemaitis - Website
Special Services
Mrs. Stacy DiLorenzo - School Psychologist
Mrs. Helene Magno - LDTC 
TBD - School Social Worker
Mrs. Kerry Cron - Speech
 
 

Riverdale Public School is pleased to announce that applications are being accepted for its Integrated Preschool Program. The a.m. session will be comprised primarily of three-year-old youngsters while the p.m. session will typically accommodate four-year-olds.

General education students, who are selected by lottery, would attend the preschool commencing September 2018. A modest tuition of $3,000 will be charged. A $300 deposit is due upon application. To be eligible, a general education student must be three (3) years of age on or before October 1, 2018, and be toilet trained. A birth certificate, copy of immunizations, and proofs of residency along with the deposit will be required for those students applying for consideration to the program. Deposits will only be refunded if a child is not chosen during the lottery, or if an opening created by the withdrawal of your child can be filled. The available spots will be filled by lottery to be held at the March 21, 2018, public Board of Education meeting.

A parent information meeting has been scheduled for Wednesday, January 31, 2018, at 7:00 p.m. in the school library. Please call the school office at 973-839-1300 x 100 to RSVP. Parents who have further questions may call Mr. Michael McKeown, Principal, at 973-839-1300 X 100.

The applications for general education students will be accepted from January 31, 2018, through 4:00 pm March 20, 2018, and are submitted online here. Please send a deposit check in after submission that is made out to Riverdale BOE.


Preschool Program Highlights
  • Favorable teacher to student ratio; with a teacher that holds a Master of Education degree in Early Childhood Education and NJ certified in Nursery School Instruction, Elementary Education, and Teacher of the Handicapped
  • Instruction guided by The Creative Curriculum for Preschool, a  state-approved curriculum that addresses the social, emotional, physical, cognitive, and language development of young children
  • Hands-on, play-based learning for all students in a safe and nurturing  classroom environment
  • Student participation in physical education, music, art, and library classes with instruction by highly qualified teachers
 

Program Overview

The Riverdale School District is offering the community a tuition-based half-day preschool program for children who turn three or four years of age on or before October 1, 2018, and are toilet trained. Three-year-old students attend the morning class and four-year-olds attend the afternoon class. The program is for typically developing children and children with special needs and will run in accordance with the school calendar, Monday through Friday.

The tuition lottery-based program anticipates openings for the three and four-year-old classes for the 2018-2019 school year. The “lottery” will be held at the March 21, 2018, Board of Education meeting at 7:30 p.m. in the Riverdale School Library.

The Riverdale Preschool Program uses the state approved Creative Curriculum. Preschool students learn in a caring, safe, nurturing, creative, and positive classroom environment. The program will assist in transitioning from home to school while developing a positive self-image and building social skills. Each child is recognized as an individual, working from his or her own present developmental level and moving forward one-step at a time, while engaging in play-based instruction.

 
 
Advantages to Attending Preschool

Research shows, children enrolled in a high-quality early childhood education program are more likely to do well in school and have long-term academic success compared to students who do not attend preschool. The Riverdale preschool program provides children the opportunity to work and play with age-appropriate peers.  Regardless of ability level, children learn from one another.

Children who participate in a preschool program have shown social gains and overall academic readiness skills for Kindergarten compared to students who do not attend preschool. They also display empathy towards all of their peers and are more responsive to children with special needs or disabilities. These children tend to be increasingly aware of the needs of their friends as well.  Children with special needs in the preschool program have the ability to work with positive role models who demonstrate typically developing skills that teachers are introducing. Additionally, these role models set realistic age-appropriate behavioral expectations for all children. Children with special needs and those who are typically developing are equal members in the classroom community, resulting in increased self-esteem and the formation of friendships. Recent studies have found that children with disabilities enrolled in a preschool program demonstrate higher levels of social play and more appropriate social interactions while achieving higher levels of language, cognitive, and motor development.


The Creative Curriculum for Preschool is a comprehensive curriculum linked to an assessment system that addresses both state of NJ teaching/learning standards and developmentally appropriate instruction.  It is recognized for its effectiveness with general education and special needs children. It is designed to focus on the whole-child developmental process.

Social / Emotional Development: Social and emotional skills are essential to a child’s well-being and success in school and in life.  Children work towards individual growth in the areas of their sense of self, a feeling of responsibility for one’s self and for others, and overall pro-social behavior.  Cognitive Development: Cognitive development is the process of learning to think and reason.  Children work towards individual growth in the areas of learning and problem-solving, logical thinking, and representation and symbolic thinking.  Physical Development: Physical skills are important for future tasks in reading, writing, scientific explorations, and math.  Children work towards individual growth in the areas of gross motor development and fine motor development.  
Language Development: A solid foundation in language development enables children to develop skills they need to become successful learners.  Children work towards individual growth in the areas of listening and speaking and reading and writing.