Pinellas County Schools Pre-K and VPK programs

 

Pinellas County Schools is updating its online application process for Prekindergarten for three year olds and Voluntary Prekindergarten. From Jan. 22 to Feb. 2, parents will be able to apply online for Pre-K 3 and VPK for the 2018-19 school year.

Parents will also need to log back into the district’s Student Reservation system Feb. 19-28 to accept an invitation for Pre-K 3 or VPK programs.

Pre-K 3 is for children who will be three years old on or before Sept. 1. For information about Pre-K 3, visit www.pcsb.org/prek3 or call 727-588-6000 ext. 2184.

VPK is for children who will be four years old on or before Sept. 1. For information about VPK, visit www.pcsb.org/vpk or call 727-588-6513.

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How to register for Pre-K and VPK programs for next school year:

  1. Families interested in VPK will need to apply for a Certificate of Eligibility (voucher) from the Early Learning Coalition at www.vpkpinellas.net. If you have questions, call 727-400-4411. You will not need a voucher for Pre-K 3.

  2. Get a PCS User ID and Password. Go to any district school with your government-issued ID to obtain a user ID and password (if you don’t have one for another child).

  3. Apply for up to three sites at reservation.pcsb.org Jan. 22 to Feb. 2.

  4. Log onto reservation.pcsb.org Feb. 19-28 to find out if your application was selected. Accept an invitation, or decline and remain on waitlists for other sites. If you fail to accept an invitation during this period, the invitation will be void.

  5. Enroll at your assigned school March-1-16. Bring your registration fee, Early Learning Coalition voucher (for VPK), and the required documents listed on the district website. Please note: Families enrolling for VPK must present the Certificate of Eligibility (voucher). Confirmation numbers will not be accepted. Parents not completing the enrollment process will lose their seat.

Why is prekindergarten important?

The early years are a significant time for learning and development. Prekindergarten programs help provide the foundation for healthy development and more advanced learning.

In Pinellas County Schools high-quality prekindergarten programs, children:

  • Develop social and emotional skills

  • Build language, literacy and communication skills

  • Explore math and science

  • Discover the joy of learning

Research shows that early education leads to better outcomes in school and in life. Children who attend high-quality prekindergarten programs are less likely to use special education services or be held back in school. They’re also more likely to graduate, attend college and be successful in their careers.

Pinellas County Schools Pre-K and VPK programs are guided by the Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards. They provide a full day of activities in a safe and nurturing environment. Most classes are staffed with a certified teacher.

Onsite before- and after-care is available. Pinellas County Schools programs provide a smooth transition to kindergarten, developing familiarity with the campus and school resources.

What is a typical day like in Pinellas County Schools prekindergarten programs?

Activities include a morning circle, small-group instruction, center-time choices, outside play, rest and closing circle. This structure offers children balanced opportunities to learn through play, exploration and real-world experiences.

Center-time choices allow children to choose activities such as blocks, construction toys, dramatic play, art and science. Outside play offers children time to run, play and extend their learning in the outdoors. Children also participate in physical education classes. Teachers play alongside children to encourage physical, social and cognitive development.

How much do Pinellas County Schools prekindergarten programs cost?

Pre-K 3The cost is $75 per week with a non-refundable registration fee that is applied to tuition. At select locations, the Pre-K 3 program is supported with Title I funding. Qualifying families at these Title I schools do not pay tuition.

VPK Pinellas County Schools VPK program is free for the first three hours of the day. The program can be extended for an additional three hours through a tuition fee of $65 a week and a non-refundable registration fee, which will be applied to the last two weeks’ tuition. The district calls this VPK+3. At select locations, the VPK+3 program is supported with Title I funding. Qualifying families at these schools do not pay tuition.

Get ready for prekindergarten

  • Plan to attend school events to learn more about your child’s prekindergarten program and meet your child’s teacher.

  • Establish a bedtime and morning routine a few weeks before prekindergarten starts.

  • Talk with the school’s nurse if your child has allergies or special medical needs.

  • Visit www.pcsb.org/prek3  or www.pcsb.org/vpk  for child development tips.

  • Read books about preschool.

  • Listen to your child’s concerns.

  • Prepare for a bit of separation anxiety the first few weeks.

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