SD83 Early Learning (0-5 yr) Information
Early Learning Initiatives in North Okanagan-Shuswap SD #83
The school district would like to let parents know about some of the early learning initiatives available in our district including: StrongStart; Early Learning Fairs; Ready, Set, Learn; Full Day Kindergarten; Welcome to Kindergarten; and Kindergarten PALS. A brief overview of each initiative can be found below. For more information about early learning programs please contact: Jennifer Findlay Early Learning Coordinator North Okanagan-Shuswap School District #83 at 250-833-2095 or email:
Early Learning Initiatives Schedule for School District #83

Ready, Set, Learn Events
Ready Set Learn events take place in every elementary school in the North Okanagan-Shuswap. These are free early learning events that are open to families and caregivers with children who are 3 and 4 years old. Families and their children who attend will engage in play-based early learning activities while finding out about the early learning programs and services offered by our school district and community organizations. Families will receive free books and a kit of materials and resources to help support their child’s early learning experiences.
There's also an on-line parent booklet, which offers parents helpful tips and easy and fun learning activities for three and four year olds. Please click for booklet.

Kindergarten orientation events
In the year before starting school, parents/caregivers and their children are invited to attend a Welcome to Kindergarten Orientation at their neighbourhood school.  Families meet school principals, kindergarten teachers, and school resource personnel and participate in a number of learning activities.  For more information please contact your neighbourhood school or contact Jennifer Findlay at 250-833-2095.

StrongStart is a free school-based program that provides play-based early learning opportunities for children (0 to 5 years old) and their parents or caregivers. Click here for brochure.
Our full-time StrongStart programs run five days a week for three hours a day at the following locations: District Education Support Centre (Salmon Arm), South Broadview Elementary (Salmon Arm), MV Beattie Elementary (Enderby), Highland Park Elementary (Armstrong), and Parkview Elementary (Sicamous). Families are welcome to drop in for all or just part of the program on any day the program is running. There are also part-time programs at Sorrento, Falkland and North Shuswap.
Please note that in order to accommodate the construction schedule at Carlin, the StrongStart program at Carlin will be moved to Sorrento on Mondays starting in September until construction is completed (likely December or January). At that time, the Carlin StrongStart program will then move back to Carlin and run on Mondays.
 â€śWe are so fortunate to have such an awesome team of Early Childhood Educators!” comments Early Learning Co-ordinator Jennifer Findlay.
For more information about StrongStart or other early learning programs please look for Early Learners under the drop down menu for Parents and Students on this website or call co-ordinator Jennifer Findlay at 250 833 2095. The 2016-17 StrongStart schedule is  available here.

Early Learning Fairs
Early Years Fairs are held annually in Salmon Arm, Sicamous, Enderby, Armstrong and the South Shuswap area.
In partnership with local Early Childhood Development Committees and community organizations, Early Years Fairs provide an opportunity for families with preschoolers to find out more about early learning programs and community services available to families. Free entertainment, snacks, and books are often provided and children have the chance to engage in fun play-based learning activities.

Salmon Arm Early Years Fair
Monday, January 23 from 5 - 7 p.m. at the District Education Support Centre (DESC)

North & South Shuswap Early Years Fair
TBA for 2016-17

Enderby Early Years Fair
October 4 at M.V. Beattie Elementary Gym. Session runs from 10 a.m. to 12 noon.
Sicamous/Malakwa Early Years Fair (Already Held for 2014)
TBA for 2016-17
Sicamous Recreation Centre

Armstrong Early Years Fair
Tuesday, April 25, 2017 from 9 - 11 a.m. at Highland Park Elementary.

Full School Day Kindergarten
A high quality, play-based Kindergarten program has long-term benefits for children’s academic and social skills and helps them to succeed in school and in life. Full day kindergarten is another step towards building a strong foundation for lifelong learning, in a nurturing, play-based environment.  Starting in 2010, the Ministry of Education began phasing in universal access over 2 years. Full day kindergarten is now available for all five-year-olds in the province.

For more information about early learning programs, please contact  Jennifer Findlay, Early Learning Coordinator, North Okanagan-Shuswap School District #83 at 250-833-2095 or by email at