Early Childhood Education

The Early Childhood Education Department supports social-emotional and academic learning opportunities for our youngest students.  Both preschool and transitional kindergarten options are available for students and families.  Specific eligibility information is provided below.  

La Mesa-Spring Valley Early Childhood Education Office
4811 Glen Street
La Mesa, CA 91941
(619) 771-6082
FAX (619) 668-8368

District Logo 1 4x1 4

Director, Early Childhood Education
Charmaine Lawson

District Logo 1 4x1 4

Administrative Assistant
Eva Munoz

District Logo 1 4x1 4

For Questions Regarding SmartSteps Payment:
Sandra Ward
(619) 668-5700 x6475

Transitional Kindergarten (TK)

What is TK?

As the San Diego County Office of Education (SDCOE) describes:

Transitional Kindergarten (TK) is a special program designed for students who turn 5 in the fall – and are not quite old enough to enroll in traditional kindergarten. A child is eligible for TK if they have their 5th birthday between September 2 and February 2 (inclusive).

TK is designed as the first year of a two-year kindergarten program using modified kindergarten curriculum that is age and developmentally appropriate. A child who completes one year in a TK program, will continue in a kindergarten program for one additional year. 

Enrollment for the 2022-2023 School Year

Enrollment begins March 1, 2022. You may begin the online enrollment process on March 1st or you may also enroll at the identified TK site. 

If you wish to enroll at a school other than your identified TK site of residence, you must complete a transfer form with Student Services. For more information regarding transfers, call LMSV Schools Student Services at (619) 668-5700. For more information regarding transfers, call LMSV Schools Student Supports at (619) 668-5700. Transfer forms are available under the Related Resources section on our transfer page.

Where is TK for the 2022-2023 school year?

our home address determines your identified TK site. TK will be hosted at the following sites:

  • Kempton (home to TK for Kempton, Bancroft and La Presa families)
  • Highlands (home to TK for Highlands, Sweetwater Springs families)
  • Casa de Oro (home to TK for Casa de Oro, Loma families)
  • Murdock (home to TK for Murdock families)
  • Lemon Avenue (home to TK for Lemon Avenue families)
  • La Mesa Dale (home to TK for La Mesa Dale families)
  • Maryland Avenue (home to TK for Maryland Avenue)
  • Murray Manor (home to TK for Murray Manor families)
  • Northmont (home to TK for Northmont)
  • Rancho (home to TK for Rancho, Avondale and Bancroft* families)
  • Rolando (home for TK for Rolando families)
  • Fletcher Hills (home for TK for Fletcher Hills families)

*Bancroft resident students are in an optional attendance area and may enroll at either Rancho or Kempton without completing a transfer form.

If you wish to attend a school other than your identified TK site, please complete a intra-district transfer request form.

Preschool Options


Attending preschool prior to kindergarten gives students a tremendous advantage. La Mesa Spring Valley Schools offers part-day (8:30 am – 11:30 am) preschool opportunities to 3 and 4 year old children. We provide a safe and nurturing environment for children to learn, grow and explore. Our preschool classes support each child’s individual academic, physical and social-emotional growth by providing developmentally appropriate lessons, materials, indoor and outdoor space, equipment, and guidelines for active play, movement and exploration that are healthy and safe.

Curriculum in our preschool is based on California Preschool Curriculum Framework and teaches the Preschool Learning Foundations. Hands-on, fun learning activities provide experiences that develop the knowledge and skills our youngest learners should know before entering kindergarten. Active, playful exploration and experimentation is encouraged and intentional opportunities are planned throughout the preschool day making our preschool program the best foundation for your child’s educational career.

The collaboration and partnership between school and home begins now. Experiences both in the home and at school are the foundation for continued academic and social success in years to follow. We encourage families to be involved in their child’s learning and volunteer throughout the school year.

Students must be potty trained to enroll in LMSV Preschool.

State-Funded Preschool

LMSV State-Funded Preschool enrollment requires income and other eligibility criteria. Students must be or turn four years of age by December 1st of the current school year in order to enroll in our State Funded Preschool classes. Avondale Elementary, Bancroft Elementary, Kempton Street Literacy Academy, La Mesa Dale Elementary, La Presa Elementary, Rancho Elementary and Sweetwater Springs campuses are homes to our State Preschool classes. Students attend class 5-days a week from 8:30 am-11:30 am

Registration for our State-Funded Preschool Classes is completed at our Early Childhood Education Center located at 4811 Glen Street, La Mesa, CA 91941. For more information call 619-771-6082.

State Funded Preschool Registration Materials can be downloaded below or picked up at our Early Childhood Education Center.

SmartSteps Fee-Based Preschool

La Mesa Spring Valley School District offers SmartSteps, a fee-based preschool program at two locations – Fletcher Hills Elementary (Community Care Licensing #376700416) and Maryland Avenue Elementary (Community Care Licensing #376700136). A child must be three years of age by August 1st of the current school year in order to attend SmartSteps.

2022-2023 SmartSteps Preschool Fees
Non-Refundable Registration Fee: $70

2-day program8:30am-11:30 am$60 per week
3-day program8:30am-11:30 am$80 per week
5-day program8:30am-11:30 am$120 per week

Registration for SmartSteps Preschools is completed at the Early Childhood Education Center. Registration begins March 1.

You'll Love It Here!

  • Award-Winning, Tuition-Free Neighborhood Schools
  • All-Day Kindergarten Offered at all Schools
  • Engaging Before and After School Care Offered at all Schools
  • Exemplary Staff Dedicated to Educating, Supporting, and Nurturing ALL Children
  • Innovative Educational Programs and Academies Including:
    • Arts and Music Education
    • Spanish Language Immersion
    • Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, Mathematics (STEAM)
    • Online, Home School, and Blended Learning Programs
  • World-Class Physical Education Facilities

Enroll Today!

ESS+    District+

District Spotlight

Spotlight on Maryland Ave Elementary

Check out our latest Spotlight Story showcasing what makes Maryland Ave so special! 


Academy Program Offerings Dazzle with Music at Spring Valley Academy

Enjoy this video about amazing students at Spring Valley Academy, an International Baccalaureate Middle Years Programme School.  Academy enrollment is now open until December 2.


Academy Programs in LMSV Engage Unique Gifts of Each Child

Enjoy this video about student artists and performances at LMAAC. Academy enrollment is now open until December 2.


Get the La Mesa-Spring Valley Schools App