The Preschool Promise Board announced Monday that tuition assistance will be expanded to 3-year-olds at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), or about $48,600 per year for a family of four. Eligible families of 4-year-old children already receive it.
Preschool Promise Interim Director Stephanie Byrd says expanding the program to families of 3-year-olds was the hope but she had to see how many 4-year-olds took advantage of the program. "The community heard two years of preschool for all children when we were doing the campaign last year and we would like to extend that while we can."
A five-year Cincinnati Public School levy is funding Preschool Promise. The United Way oversees the spending of $15 million a year to expand access to quality education. Parents can use the tuition assistance at more than 75 Preschool Promise-approved public and private preschools within the district.
"Voters approved the Cincinnati Preschool Promise with the expectation that quality preschool will be accessible to children from low income families who live in the Cincinnati school district," says Michael J. Graham, S.J., president of Xavier University and chairman of the CPP Board of Directors. "Providing this opportunity through CPP has been like creating a start-up business focused on a very important and precious customer base. We are thrilled to be able to expand the number of children and families we serve in our first year."
According to Byrd, "We are open for enrollment in community-based and school district-based programs and it's a school year program, so the sooner they enroll the better.
Families can call their preschool provider to enroll or call this central number: 513-447-4277.