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For Families

Profile of the Ready Kindergartner

South Carolina’s Profile of the Ready Kindergartner describes the physical, cognitive, social and emotional signs that a child is prepared for academic success. Developed by South Carolina First Steps and the SC Department of Education, it serves as the state’s official description of school readiness.


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Ready? Set…Go!

A Parent’s Guide to Kindergarten in South Carolina was developed by Family Connection of South Carolina so that families know what to expect, how to prepare, and feel confident when the first day of school arrives.


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Ready, Set – Kindergarten!

A series of family guides for preschool and kindergarten development from the Carolina Family Engagement Center.


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The Kindergarten Readiness Assessment

(KRA) measures a child’s school readiness abilities at the beginning of the kindergarten year. All students entering publicly funded kindergarten programs in South Carolina participate in this statewide assessment within the first 45 days of the school year. The results help kindergarten teachers understand how best to meet the individual needs of their students.


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For Schools and Communities

South Carolina First Steps partners with schools, community organizations, and educators to provide professional development and offer Countdown to Kindergarten programming in local communities.

Family Engagement Program

The Countdown to Kindergarten program connects kindergarten teachers with incoming students and families during the summer before school entry. Using an evidence-informed curriculum, teachers conduct six sessions with each family, five in the home and a final visit in the kindergarten classroom. Program models are available for transitions into 4- and 5-year-old kindergarten with supplementary supports for children with disabilities and dual-language learners.


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South Carolina Early Learning Standards

The SC-ELS provides a common set of developmental expectations for young children. The document is designed as a resource for teachers, caregivers, families, administrators, and professional development providers working together to support the learning and development of South Carolina’s youngest children.


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Professional Development

The Countdown to Kindergarten Summit is an annual shared professional development opportunity for educators and early childhood professionals.


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South Carolina Pre-K to Kindergarten Transition Plan

Developed as part of the Palmetto Pre-K initiative, this plan includes a range of recommendations to promote family engagement in and around school transitions.


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Community Partnerships

South Carolina First Steps invites you to celebrate rising kindergartners and their families in your community. Download the Countdown to Kindergarten logo (color or white) and review our brand guidelines before adding the logo to your event materials. Share your celebration on social media using the #CountdownSC hashtag.

Countdown to Kindergarten Logo (color)

Countdown to Kindergarten Logo (white)


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Get Ready for School

Learn what it means to be ready and how you can help prepare your child for success.