AVERY COUNTY — The SCOTTIE Bus is a popular program for preschool-aged students who will attend Avery County Schools.
It gives kids between the age of three and four a chance to experience a bit of what school is like before they enter kindergarten with a state-endorsed literacy program.
This year the mobile classroom has been setting up shop at county schools rather than in years past where the bus would often appear at local churches.
Avery County Schools Interim Superintendent Bill Miller said the change was made because the district and parents feel it is safer for everyone to park at the schools.
SCOTTIE teacher Ginny Warriner said the change has been well received.
“It’s beneficial to my families and to me,” Braswell said. “It’s a comfort to a lot of the parents.”
Warriner added the change has improved attendance for the bus, sometimes getting 15 kids to show up for the completely free program.
The program has a number of different activities for the kids. It starts out with some kind of letter, color, shape or number activity before opening up for free play with different centers, including different stations like a sand center, art and blocks, topped off with a snack and story time.
Warriner said different activities appeal to different kids. There is an upcoming literacy hour at the elementary schools that will allow SCOTTIE students to experience the schools, an occasion Warriner will not be present for. In the spring, however, a similar event will take place that Warriner will be part in and attend.
The bus also now has a PTO which will help fundraising for program needs. The program is funded year-to-year, and the PTO will also be holding a fundraiser in the spring to repair some of the areas on the bus, including the dramatic play area.
If you would like to learn more about what the bus is doing, or are interested in getting your children involved, Avery County Schools has a page on its website dedicated to the bus with a brochure and more information available by clicking to www.averyschools.net/scottie-bus