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FPDS to Open Preschool in 2017 School Year

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Cathy Miller to serve as preschool director

November 10, 2016 – First Presbyterian Day School (FPDS) announced today the addition of three- and four-year-old preschool classes to its kindergarten through sixth grade elementary school, opening in the 2017-2018 school year.  

“We are excited that this portion of our long-term strategic planning has come to fruition,” said FPDS Head of School Gary Herring. “Beginning in the fall of 2017, First Presbyterian Day School will offer a five-day preschool program, with operating hours the same as our upper school. It is our prayer that by opening preschool classes, FPDS will serve an expanded market of families with preschool-aged children.”

Jackson resident Cathy Miller has been named FPDS preschool director. “FPDS has had a long-standing relationship with Cathy as a colleague and former FPDS parent and friend,” Herring said. “We commend her leadership and commitment to providing a safe, creative, Christ-centered education for young children for almost 30 years.”

"My children went through the Day School, and I saw first-hand the importance of teaching Christian principles at an early age,” Miller said. “I don't think children are ever too young, even at the preschool age, to learn these principles and experience God's love for them shown through caring teachers.”

The FPDS kindergarten admissions process will remain the same. “FPDS values our partnership with many preschools around the metro area,” Herring said, “Our administration will continue to work with their directors to keep an open dialogue on kindergarten-readiness.”

For the first year of operation, three classes each of K3 and K4 will be added. Daily hours will be five days a week from 8:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., with drop-in Crusader Circle (preschool’s own after-school program) available until 6 p.m.  Early room is provided beginning at 7:30 a.m. for no additional cost. The Under the Oaks summer program will also be expanded beginning summer of 2018 to accommodate K4 and K5 students. (Students must have attended FPDS one year prior to enrolling.)

Founded in 1964, FPDS currently serves more than 575 students in grades kindergarten through sixth from over 25 communities in and near the metro-Jackson area.  The mission of the school is to plant seeds of Christlikeness in the hearts of children; pursue excellence in academics; and prepare students for future service in their homes, churches, and professions.

Requests to tour FPDS for K3 through sixth grades should be directed to Amy-Allison Russ at 601-940-9012. Enrollment will begin in priority order. For details see “Quick Facts” below.

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Cathy Miller
Cathy Miller

Cathy Miller Bio

Cathy is a native of Clarksdale, and she and her husband, Craig, have resided in Jackson for the past 25 years. She received a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts in early childhood education from the University of Mississippi. Cathy was a classroom teacher for eight years, followed by director of Broadmeadow Preschool for eight years. In 2003, she became the director of Meadowbrook Preschool, a combined mothers' day out and preschool for children ranging from six months to five-years-old.

Cathy’s children are all FPDS alumni. Farris, 26, lives and works in Jackson; Murray, 24, lives and works in Madrid, Spain; and Tate, 18, is a student at the University of Mississippi.

A member of First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, Cathy enjoys all Ole Miss sports, along with walking, cooking and reading.

Cathy has been involved in several charitable organizations in her community and has served as president of the board for the Salvation Army and her local YMCA branch. She also served as chairman of committees for both Mistletoe Marketplace and the Jackson Symphony League.  

First Presbyterian Day School 2017-2018 Preschool Quick Facts

  • Beginning in August 2017, FPDS will add three classes each of K3 and K4.
     
  • Enrollment will open in the priority order below at www.fpds.org. Future class sizes will be determined as the program expands and space is provided to FPDS.
    • Children of FPDS staff members November 14 – December 2
    • FPDS siblings/First Presbyterian Church, Jackson, members November 14 – December 2
    • Families who have already completed an FPDS kindergarten application for the years of 2018 and 2019 (in order of application submission) December 5 – January 15
    • Open to all January 16, 2017
       
  • Children must be three or four years of age by September 1 and potty-trained.
     
  • The FPDS Preschool will be located within the current school facility.
     
  • The preschool will only offer K3 and K4 five-day a week classes. The preschool will maintain the same calendar schedule as FPDS.
     
  • K3 and K4 will run 8:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m., with drop-in Crusader Circle (preschool’s own after-school program) available until 6 p.m.  Early room is provided beginning at 7:30 a.m. for no additional cost. The Under the Oaks summer program will also be expanded beginning summer of 2018 to accommodate K4 and K5 students. (Students must have attended FPDS one year prior to enrolling.)
     
  • The FPDS kindergarten admissions process and testing will remain the same. Students who are advised or decide to hold back will be guaranteed a spot in the K4 program. K3 and K4 students will not be assessed prior to entering FPDS.
     
  • The 2017-2018 tuition is set for $4,500 for both K3 and K4, with a non-refundable $75 application fee and $300 annual enrollment fee.
     
  • The cost of Crusader Circle from 12:15 to 6 p.m. is $4.50/ hour. You only pay for the time that you attend and will be billed at the end of the month.
     
  • For children staying for Crusader Circle, a hot lunch is available from the cafeteria or you may bring your own lunch. FPDS will provide a morning snack.
     
  • A variety of after-school extra-curricular activities will be offered to preschool-age students, and parents would not be charged an hourly rate while their child participated in these programs.
     
  • Requests to tour FPDS for K3 through sixth grades should be directed to Amy-Allison Russ at 601-940-9012.