St. Ignatius to start nursery in September

choice in early childhood education for three to five year olds on Grand Cayman
will increase this September with the launch of an early years programme by St.
Ignatius Catholic School.

The school,
which currently enrolls children ages four through 17, plans to open a nursery
with places for 16 pupils.

Parents and
potential pupils are invited to the Nursery’s Open House on Thursday, 22 April,
12.30-2pm and Friday, 23, 8.30-10am.

According to
the Head of School, Gary Clarke, the initiative was a “natural progression”
given the school’s existing reception programme.

“Our reception
year classes already follow the Early Foundation Stage British curriculum. The
curriculum is ideal for the foundation years which also incorporates the nursery
year so it made sense to run both years,” he said.

“We look on
this an opportunity to meet the needs of the island.”

The Early
Years Foundation Stage British curriculum is based on six areas of learning: personal,
social and emotional development; communication, language and literacy; problem
solving, reasoning and numeracy; physical and creative development; and
knowledge and understanding the world.

Mr. Clarke
explained that the nursery programme, which starts 30 August, would be taught
by a qualified teacher supported by a teacher’s aide. “This will give the class
a 1:8 ratio in keeping with the current teaching practice guideline,” he said.

The Head of
School advised that the nursery, which is to be housed in the same block as the
reception class, will have the same hours as the rest of the school (7.45am to
2.30pm) and would offer afterschool care until 5.30pm.

“We will also
be looking into providing day care for our pupils during the holidays,” he

The annual fee
for the nursery programme will be $7,140, pro rated at $768 a month, Mr. Clarke
said, adding that “our usual $100 non-refundable application fee will be waived
for the first year of the nursery programme”.