Kindergarten is a special time for every child. It’s also an important decision for families and caregivers – which kindergarten to choose. Thank you for considering us in your search. At Catalyst, we love Kindergarten!
Catalyst is a tuition-free public charter school, the first new public school in over six years in Pittsburgh. We’re here to make and keep learning fun. We aim to prepare our scholars for a lifetime of curiosity, confidence and character-building. Our school is currently K-1 and will be a K-2 in the 2021-2022 school year, so we can focus on our youngest learners, and grow with them.
Here’s what our Kindergarten day together — in-person — looks like:
- Arrival 7:45-8:20
- Breakfast 7:45-8:20
- 8:20-8:50 Community Time
- Academic day includes Phonics, English Language Arts, Math, STEM, PE, Arts, Lunch, Recess
- 4:00-4:15 Dismissal
Some other things to know about us:
- Breakfast and lunch are provided for all scholars, as is an afternoon snack. All meals meet federal nutrition guidelines
- STEM happens everyday which includes 1 day of computer science
- Art and PE classes are 4x/week
- We have an afterschool program available that runs until 6:30
Catalyst scholars learn and practice essential social, emotional, and problem-solving skills throughout Kindergarten and all school years. The development of self-esteem is one of our biggest kindergarten goals.
In our small Kindergarten classes, capped at 18, our teachers are able to attend to each student every day, many times a day. Our Kinder teachers tailor instruction to meet the needs of each student in their care.
“We recognize the importance of providing many different modalities of learning for our young scholars, including physical, creative, and hands-on learning. That is why we created a plan that includes arts and phys ed 4 days, and STEM 5 days week. Scholars also have recess every day, where they are often able to go outside for unstructured playground time.”
Brian Smith, CEO, Catalyst Academy of Pittsburgh
Our Kindergarteners love having STEM classes five days a week and Art and PE four days a week. Our teachers also break up the learning day with frequent “brain breaks” and love to celebrate progress and learning.
We will ultimately grow to be a K-8 public charter school. Joining us in Kindergarten means your child can attend the same school for nine years, creating stability and routine — both exciting and essential for elementary and middle school learning.
Our inclusive learning model means we are committed to removing barriers and including all scholars in learning. Our core values begin with Belong for a reason. Every scholar belongs at Catalyst and it begins with our Kindergarten class.
As an equity-driven organization serving predominantly African-American students, we know that part of our work is to build positive racial identity in our scholars. Consequently, we provide a culturally-affirming curriculum and work towards having a diverse staff, board, and community partners. We are creating a holistic academic experience that prepares our scholars to have the knowledge, skills, and mindset necessary to break down racial, economic, and other barriers to their future success.
Our four Kindergarten teachers, STEM, ART, and PE teachers align to ensure our Kinders get the most from their school days. Their teacher bios repeat many common themes in use by our youngest scholars — joy, curiosity, enthusiasm and love of learning. These handpicked teachers deliver incomparable dedication to creating safe spaces where our Catalyst scholars feel both challenged and successful. It’s key to our mission, too.
At Catalyst, we take the growth and progress of each of our scholars very seriously. We use a variety of tools to assess learning progress; ranging from using nationally recognized assessments a few times a year to our daily teacher observations. We actively collect information on how well scholars have learned specific lessons and incorporate all of this data to enable us to constantly improve our instruction, and provide additional support to scholars as needed.
Last but not least, here are our core Catalyst values. Guiding us in the pursuit of our school mission: Belong, Grow and Achieve — our core values include all scholars, families, teachers and staff. From Kindergarten to our eventual K-8 public school we believe:
All scholars, families, teachers, and staff belong with us and will be embraced, respected, and supported.
Every Catalyst Academy scholar, teacher, and staff member is committed to growing every day in alignment with our mission.
A great education should be a catalyst for each scholar to define and achieve their dreams.
Catalyst Academy Charter School’s mission is to prepare all students for college, career, and life. Catalyst Academy Charter School’s core values of Belong. Grow. Achieve. reflect the school’s deep commitment to cultivating an inclusive supportive school community where everyone – children and adults – is focused on learning every day, in order for all students to define and achieve their dreams. Catalyst Academy Charter School’s education model is designed to close both the achievement and opportunity gap. The approach couples rigorous core academics with a broad offering in the arts and sciences. Students will experience STEM learning daily and arts programming four days per week. Enroll your Kinder, first or second grader today!