What is the Voluntary Pre-K Program
The Voluntary Pre-kindergarten program (VPK) is a state funded readiness program for at-risk children who are 4 years of age on August 15. “At risk” is defined by the state as economically disadvantaged. Other “at-risk” factors which may be used to determine eligibility may include but are not limited to: English as a Second Language, foster care, and students with speech or language difficulties. Due to state funding there are limited classrooms available in Lebanon Special School District, priority placement is given to families that are economically disadvantaged. The VPK program provides a foundation for learning and successful transition to Kindergarten.
Does every elementary school have a Pre-K class?
Yes. Pre-K classrooms are located at Byars Dowdy, Castle Heights, Coles Ferry, Jones Brummett, and Sam Houston elementaries.
Who may apply for the Pre-K class?
Parents/Guardians of children who are 4 years of age on or before August 15 of the current year and are zoned for Lebanon Special School District. All applications received by June 1 will be processed and parents will be notified by email on or before June 11 if their child has been accepted. Applications will still be accepted after this date until all spots have been filled.
How do I apply for the Pre-Kindergarten program?
All applications are submitted online on the Lebanon Special School District Website.
What if I choose to wait and start my child in Kindergarten at the age of 6? Would he/she be able to attend the Pre-K class at the age of 5?
No. The Pre-K program is only available for children who are 4 years of age by August 15 of the respective year. This is a Tennessee State Law for all Voluntary Pre-K programs (VPK).
Is it a first come, first serve basis for the applications? Will every applicant be entered into the program?
No. Every application will be reviewed for eligibility, but all interested parents are encouraged to turn in applications as soon as possible to be considered for enrollment. Due to state regulations on teacher: child ratio, enrollment space is limited in each classroom. According to the state guidelines for eligibility, priority placement is given to families of financial need. Once all children who qualify based on financial need have been placed, if additional space is available additional applicants will be considered for placement. Each applicant is selected for placement based on his/her specific child/family need. Placement locations are determined after all applications and documents are reviewed.
What if I cannot upload all required documents on Skyward when I register my child?
If you have trouble uploading any or all of the required documents to Skyward, please contact Dr. Penny Thompson by email at [email protected] or call Lebanon Special School District Central Office at 615-449-6060.
The following documents should be uploaded to Skyward and are required to complete the application process
- Certified Birth Certificate
- Two (2) Proofs of Residency (Acceptable Proofs of Residence)
- Tennessee Department of Health Certificate of Immunization (this is a document given by a health care physician which includes shots and current physical with the doctor's signature)
- Child Custody Documentation (if applicable)
- Proof of Income (Department of Health document with food stamp case number if applicable)
Will Free Screenings for Speech, Hearing, Vision, & Dental be available for my child?
Yes. Free screenings for Speech, Hearing, Vision, and Dental will be scheduled at a later date to be announced. Parents will be contacted with the health screening day and an appointment time.
What are the hours/days of the Pre-K class?
The Pre-K class meets Monday through Friday for 6 hours. Students arrive between 7:15 AM -7:30 AM for sign in and breakfast. Class begins at 7:30 AM and dismisses at 1:30 PM.
Is bus transportation provided for Pre-K students?
LSSD Pre-K policy does not allow for Pre-K students to ride the bus. Pre-K students must be dropped off at the Pre-K classroom and picked up at the classroom. There is a state process for
Pre-K students to be signed in and out from adult to adult.
Is before/after school care available for my child?
LSSD has an afterschool program called SACC (Student Afterschool Child Care), which collaborates with Pre-K and provides after school care for Byars Dowdy, Castle Heights, Coles Ferry, Jones Brummett, and Sam Houston. If you need after school care for your Pre-K child, information for registration will be provided at a later date. There is a fee for SACC services. For more information, contact MK Willoughby at 615-449-7422.
Since this is preschool, does my child need to attend every day?
Yes. All children enrolled in a Pre-K class are required to attend every day. Attendance is important for a successful year of learning. Your child is expected to attend school EVERY DAY and ON TIME unless he/she has a temperature or showing other symptoms of a contagious illness. Daily attendance, including tardiness/early dismissal, is reported and recorded in the school’s system and reported to the State Department of Education, the same as for children in grades K-12
Who/what determines which children are accepted into the class?
All applications received by June 1 are processed by the Pre-K Director. Parents are notified by email on or before June 11 of acceptance. Due to state regulations on teacher:child ratio, enrollment space is limited in each classroom. According to the state guidelines for eligibility, priority placement is given to families of financial need. Once all children who qualify based on financial need have been placed, if additional space is available additional applicants will be considered for placement. Each applicant is selected for placement based on his/her specific child/family need.