Sen. Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford

SPRINGFIELD – Senate Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford successfully passed a measure to require the option for full-day kindergarten across the state.

“It is important that we create equal access to education on every level,” said Lightford (D-Maywood). “This measure will ensure all families in Illinois are provided with the same opportunities for their children early on.”

Parents who live in districts without the option of full-day kindergarten are often faced with additional barriers to preparing their children for early elementary school. These barriers include, but are not limited to, mid-day transportation, loss of income due to being home with the child or finding additional childcare, and ensuring developmentally appropriate activities are being provided throughout the day.

Currently, it is optional for school districts to offer full-day kindergarten. Lightford’s measure would provide full-day kindergarten options with developmentally appropriate play-based learning opportunities for families throughout the state.

“Full-day kindergarten provides families with comprehensive, stable learning environments so children can be prepared for the demands of early elementary school,” said Lightford. “Families in all corners of the state deserve to have that opportunity and option available to them.”

House Bill 2396 passed in the Senate Wednesday.