New preschool grant funding and what it means for your child

Submitted by Hawthorne Elementary Principal Stephanie Keuhey

We know there are many questions about the new Pre-K Development Grant (PDG) that is in effect for the coming school year. We’d like to take the opportunity to address some of those questions here.

1. Is there an income qualification?

New Federal guidelines stipulate that we must give preference to children whose families make 200 percent of poverty level or less. This does not mean that other children won’t be accepted. The more students we have sign up, the more funding we will receive. While we are limited to 20 students per class, if we have enough students sign up to have three classes, that’s what funding we’ll be given! Please don’t hesitate to fill out an application because you believe you make over the amount listed on the Federal guidelines. Please make sure your application is completed and returned to Hawthorne Elementary School as soon as possible. Only completed applications will be considered, and they will be considered by date received.

2. What paperwork do I need to register my child for Pre-K?

New Federal guidelines require that all families, no matter their income, must have the following paperwork on file:

•Income verification (W-2, paycheck stub, federal income tax return, child support records, etc.)

• Free/Reduced Lunch Application (even if you don’t qualify, the Federal Government is mandating that each student have this paperwork on file.)

• Shot records

• Birth Certificate

• Completed PK Application

3. Are Pre-K classes going to have a longer day?

Yes, Pre-K will now run for six hours and 15 minutes, four days per week. This means your child will come at 8:15 a.m. and return home at 2:30 p.m. Breakfast and lunch will be available through the cafeteria and a nap/rest time will be part of the daily schedule. During this time students will have more opportunities to develop their language and thinking skills, their gross and fine motor skills, and their school readiness skills so that they’ll enter Kindergarten ready to excel.

Thank you for working with us while we make this new transition.

If you have further questions, please call or come by and talk with us.

Hawthorne Elementary School, 945-1000 or Mineral County School District, 945-2403, extension 20.

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