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Enrollment Opens at Weston's St. Francis Preschool

WESTON, Conn. -- Registration has begun for fall classes at St. Francis of Assisi Preschool. Those interested should contact school director Eleanor Moore at (203) 454-8646 or emoore@sfaparish.com .

Saint Francis of Assisi Preschool was founded in 1999 and is one of Fairfield County’s only Catholic preschool programs. The school is accredited by the State of Connecticut, and its philosophy centers around both play and age-appropriate academics. In addition, the preschool regularly uses an educational consultant and publishes lesson plans for parents to review. Children of all denominations attend.

The preschool was the brainchild of former pastor Msgr. Nicholas Grieco. The current pastor, the Rev. Michael Dunn, visits the 3s and 4s weekly and ensures that the school’s mission--caring for the children’s growth and development in a nurturing, Catholic environment--continues.

“Our preschool is an integral part of the parish. It not only provides the academics that are stepping stones for kindergarten, but nurtures the children’s faith life and fosters self-discovery and a respect for others,” said Dunn.

Saint Francis Preschool offers the following year-round programming: “Bright Beginnings,” a drop-off (two- or three-day) class for 2s (toilet-training is not necessary), a 3s program offering three or five days of instruction, and a 4s program, with a four- or five-day option.

What’s more, parents can enroll 3- and 4-year-olds in the preschool’s extended-day enrichment classes, which take place from noon to 2 p.m. and have included the following: “Lunch Bunch” incorporates lunch, music, movement, crafts and outdoor play; “Cooking” has students prepare edible treats as they learn self-help skills, reading and math concepts, nutrition, and task completion; “Pre-Literacy Skills,” open to all 4s, lays the foundation for literate thinking and kindergarten readiness and incorporates reading, rhyming and story-telling; and “Heathy Kids,” a combination of sports, exercise and games, may also return for the 2011-2012 school year. Based on demand, a Mommy and Me once-a-week, year-round class for parents and children 18 months to 2-years-old, may be added to the schedule as well.

School director Moore, who has been on campus for five years, has sought to broaden the curriculum during her tenure, specifically with the addition of technology, foreign language and social science instruction. She was formerly on staff at The Convent of the Sacred Heart in Greenwich.

“It is of utmost importance to develop the whole child--academically, spiritually, emotionally and physically--and that they leave well-rounded and prepared for the years ahead. I’ve also tried to instill a sense of helping others in our students,” said Moore.

Moore’s community outreach vision has since taken root at St. Francis. Past projects she has spearheaded include sending Halloween candy and tooth brushes to troops in Iraq, donating toys during the holidays and collecting baby and maternity clothes for underprivileged mothers. This year, the preschool adopted a second-grade class from Roberto Clemente Elementary School in New Haven, to which they donated books-on-tape, backpacks, winter wear and school supplies.  Moore also oversees the school’s Parents Association, fund-raisers, monthly newsletter, Field Day, annual Christmas Pageant, graduation and yearbook production.

To register for the Saint Francis of Assisi year-round Preschool program, visit the school or call (203) 454.8646. Additional details can be found at www.sfaparish.com.

What's your favorite part about going back to school? Send your story and photos to shenry@thedailyweston.com.

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