Parents can take care of sign-up without leaving the house


By Mimi Vanderhaven

In the hit book All I Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten, Robert Fulghum explains how the world would be a better place if we all followed the knowledge we learned in this important first year, from “play fair” and “share everything” to “clean up your own mess” and, most importantly, “be aware of wonder.”

Kindergarten registration for the 2020-2021 school year is now open in Mentor Schools, for students who will be five years old on or before Wednesday, September 30, 2020. And while it stays open through the beginning of the school year, administrators strongly recommend parents sign up their little ones in springtime to get the jump on testing and preparedness.

“We offer an easy-to-maneuver online parent portal for a custodial parent who lives within the district to register their child,” says Assistant Superintendent Timothy Hammon. “Parents can do everything through the portal, including upload documents and receive helpful information and alerts. Anyone who needs help setting up their portal is welcome to come to the administration building.”

Within the district’s seven elementary schools, there are around 500 kindergarten students each year.

And it turns out times have changed. There is a lot more to kindergarten than snack time and playtime. They don’t even nap anymore.

“Over the last five to seven years, we have started looking for a lot more out of our kindergartners,” says Tim. “For instance, the state standard is that they are expected to read by the end of the school year. The earlier we have our children proficient in reading, the better their school careers. Our kindergartners will learn English language arts, reading, writing and math, with an emphasis on reading.”

Through a kindergarten readiness assessment, students are evaluated by the teachers to see where they are academically and socially.

“No matter where a student falls, our teachers are wonderful at recognizing their capabilities and teaching to the individual,” he adds.

The Mentor School system educates 7,660 students from pre-K to 12th grade in seven elementary schools, three middle schools, one high school and one school for students with autism. For updates, and to sign your child up for kindergarten, visit There will be Open Houses during the month of May in the kindergartens, but only parents who have enrolled their kids via the portal will be notified of them.