Parents of tykes who will join the Delaware student body this year are encouraged to attend an informational meeting this week.

Parents of tykes who will join the Delaware student body this year are encouraged to attend an informational meeting this week.

The Delaware City School District's annual kindergarten information night will be held at 6 p.m. Tuesday, March 11, at each of the district's five elementary schools.

Kindergarten registration is now open for students who will be 5 years old prior to Aug. 1, 2014.

The event is designed to provide parents with information on registration, the screening process and scheduling.

The night also provides students with a first look inside the school they will attend.

"I think it's really important to get the kids in the building and get acclimated as to what their school looks like," said Josh Page, principal at Conger Elementary School. "They will also meet the teachers and see the classrooms and be able to touch things inside the classroom."

Page said the top priority is to make students feel comfortable in the school and to help prepare parents for what will be expected of their children.

"I think it's important to give the kids something familiar, such as seeing the building and interacting with teachers, to help alleviate stress for them coming on their first day," he said. "Kindergarten is a big transition for kids."

There are two schedule options for kindergarten students: full-day classes on either Monday/Thursday or Tuesday/Friday. All students will attend a half-day of school each Wednesday.

Students will eat lunch at school on their full days, but not on Wednesdays. There are breakfast options at school as well. Busing is provided for some students.

There also is a kindergarten SACK program that provides day-care for students on the two weekdays they don't attend class. Details on the program will be provided during the informational night.

Students will receive their schedule in the summer after they have taken the screening test in June. The test asks each student to complete tasks such as counting, writing his or her name, identifying letters, numbers and shapes, and identifying the sounds that letters make.

An informational packet will be available to all parents Wednesday, March 12, that provides ways to prepare their students for kindergarten.

"For example, there is a calendar from March to August that has one thing every day the parent can do with their child, like saying all the days of the week one day, and having them create their name with refrigerator letters on another day," Page said.

He said the informational night also opens up a line of communication between the parents and the school that will help going forward.

The district encourages parents to register their children early to assist the district in planning class sizes and staffing at each building.