Key Contact Numbers

Department of Early Childhood Education
(561) 434-8720

Early Learning Coalition of

Palm Beach County
(561) 653-2458

School District Head Start and Early Head Start Office
(561) 629-8516

Strong Minds Network Technical Assistance
(561) 629-8582

The Department of Early Childhood Education

Providing and supporting quality programs for young children

School Year 2015 - 2016

The School District of Palm Beach County participates in the Florida Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) program by offering both school year and summer programs at select elementary and high schools. Students who are four years of age by September 1 of a school year may participate in either a 540-hour free VPK program during the school year or a 300-hour free VPK program during the summer, but not both.

All VPK programs provide enriched educational experiences to ensure that children are prepared academically and socially to enter Kindergarten. Both public schools and private providers may offer the free VPK program. To help promote high quality services, the District actively participates in the countywide Strong Minds Network in partnership with the Children's Services Council, the Early Learning Coalition, Palm Beach State College, the Children's Forum, and Family Central. The District manages the Technical Assistance component of the Strong Minds Network.

The District offers Summer VPK and five VPK School Year program models, including year round Head Start. School year models provide VPK and optional enrichment hours. Florida law mandates that VPK students not be required to participate in enrighment or other program hours above those provided free of charge through a VPK Cerifticate as a condition of enrollment or change fees for VPK services.

For information on each VPK enrichment program model, review the chart below and click the icons on the left. To access Summer VPK information, click here, SUMMER VPK.

VPK & Title I Model

6 Hour Day

Prioritizes Academically Needy;
Must Live in Attendance Zone

Apply at Schools
Afterschool May be Available
(Fees Apply)

VPK & Migrant PreK

10 Hour Day

Must be Deemed "Migrant Eligible"

Apply at Schools; No Fees

VPK & Head Start

10 Hour Day

Must be Deemed "Head Start Eligible";
Low Income Priority

Apply at Schools; No Fees

VPK & Parent Fee

6 Hour Day

VPK and Parent Fee Agreement;
Attendance Zone Priority

Enroll at Schools
Afterschool May be Available
(Fees Apply)

VPK & ESE Inclusion

6 Hour Day

50% Typical Students;
50% Students with Disabilities

Typical Students Enroll at Schools;
Students with Disabilities are Placed; No fees