Dryden Receives Grant for UPK Program Expansion

Dryden Receives Grant for UPK Program Expansion
Posted on 12/07/2018

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday, Dec. 5 that Dryden Central School District is among 32 districts in New York State receiving a grant to support the expansion of the district’s pre-kindergarten program. As an effort to promote early education, Dryden’s award of $114,624 will assist in the implementation of a new pre-kindergarten section at Dryden Elementary School.

"This funding will help level the academic playing field for children in underserved communities and put students on a path toward opportunity and success," Cuomo’s press release stated.

The new Dryden Elementary School pre-kindergarten classroom is expected to be in operation by Jan. 28, and 18 new pre-kindergarten students will be welcomed on Feb. 1. After receiving news about the grant, Dryden Superintendent Joshua Bacigalupi met with Dryden Elementary Principal Dawn Wenzel, Dryden Business Manager Emily Shipe, Cassavant and Freeville Elementary Principal Audrey Ryan and Dryden Elementary Director of Curriculum and Instruction Cheryl Covell to ensure the new pre-kindergarten program will be in place by the first of Feb.    

“The district is excited to have the funding to expand our UPK program as this has been a growing priority for the district as well as the community,” said Dryden Central School District Superintendent, Joshua Bacigalupi.

School districts throughout New York State were awarded $15 million in total to help fund early education initiatives. According to Cuomo’s announcement, “funding was awarded to school districts based on the quality of the application and other factors, including district and student need, efforts to target the highest need students, and maximize the total number of children served in pre-kindergarten programs.”

Dryden hopes to further advance the district’s pre-kindergarten program by applying to an additional grant which would fund a pre-kindergarten classroom that would service students with disabilities.