Watauga County Offers Pre-K Classrooms Through NC Pre-K Program

Published Monday, March 20, 2017 at 11:35 am

The Children’s Council of Watauga County is currently collaborating with Watauga County Schools and Appalachian State University to provide high-quality, pre-kindergarten classrooms for the 2017-18 school year. An abundant amount of research shows by investing in high-quality pre-kindergarten education, children, schools and communities reap multiple benefits. Our pre-kindergarten classrooms are funded through North Carolina’s Pre-Kindergarten Program.

The Children’s Council is presently the NC Pre-Kindergarten contractor for Watauga County. As the contractor, The Children’s Council oversees the application process, placement of children, and monitors the classrooms and program. The NC Pre-K Program is designed to provide high-quality educational experiences to enhance school readiness for eligible four-year-old children. The NC Pre-K Program Requirements are built on the National Education Goals Panel’s premise that to be successful academically in school, children need to be prepared in all five of the developmental domains that are critical to children’s overall well-being and success in reading and math as they enter school.

To be eligible: A child must be four-years old on or before August 31st of the program year.  A child that meets the age requirement is eligible for NC Pre-K if the child is from a family whose gross income is at or below 75% of the State Median Income (SMI).  Children of certain military families are also eligible without regard to income.  In addition, up to 20% of age eligible children enrolled may have family incomes in excess of 75% SMI if they have documented risk factors in specific categories including developmental disability, Limited English Proficiency, educational need, or chronic health condition. Although a child may meet one or more eligibility factors, placement is not guaranteed in an NC Pre-K classroom. Typically a waiting list exists due to insufficient funding to serve all eligible children.

Applications for the NC Pre-K program for the 2017-18 school year will be available at The Children’s Council of Watauga County office, Watauga County School’s Gragg Education Center or may be downloaded from The Children’s Council’s website www.thechildrenscouncil.org.

For questions and more information, please contact Hunter Varipapa, the NC Pre-Kindergarten Coordinator at (828) 262-5424.

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