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Public Pre-K Offerings

Did you know that Portland Public Schools offer pre-kindergarten programs for any Portland kid 4 years old on or before September 1 of the year they're planning to enroll?  Here's the scoop, direct from the PPS early education web site.  I've included links for easier perusing:

Half-day programs

  • Beach - Dual language, Spanish Immersion program, 1710 N. Humboldt, 503-916-6236   
  • Chief Joseph, 2409 N Saratoga, 503-916-6255
  • Sabin, 4013 NE 18th, 503-916-6181
  • Vernon, 2044 NE Killingsworth, 503-916- 6415

Full-day programs

Full-day, fee-for-service pre-kindergarten

  • Richmond Elementary, full-day and half-day Japanese Immersion pre-kindergarten program. 2276 SE 41st; 503-916-6220.

Make sure to download the School Catalog to read up on the stats and offerings at each school.  Any mamas with experiences they'd like to share?

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are they expensive?

I believe Irvington Elementrary also has pre-K. I think they have a free half-day and a fee-based full-day.

Irvington's pre-k is a tuition based program. info at http://www.iedprogram.org

The other pre-k's are free. I think all the pre-k programs are half day. There are usually two sessions, morning and afternoon.

Are there any current Vernon pre-k parents out there? I would love to hear your thoughts about the classroom/teacher/learning environment,yada yada. We are looking into sending our boys there next year, and I want to gather as much info. as I can. thanks!

I think Faubion also has pre-K. My son started with Kindergarten, so I don't know any of the particulars about the program.

Faubion does have a free full-day pre-K. My daughter is there now, and loves it! This year the class filled up with just neighborhood kids, so there's no room for transfers. It's nice to know that the kids Anya is bonding with will be in school with her for years to come.

Is there any reason for/against the free pre-K programs? Would there be a different focus than a regular second year of preschool, or is it the same thing (mostly play, etc)? From my uninformed perspective, hooray, free! But I don't know how these specific programs are, compared to a second year of preschool. Does anyone send their child to one of these pre-K programs? Or conversely, did anyone check these out and have a strong opinion about why they WOULDN'T send their child to one of these?

We tried to get our daughter into the Chief Jo and Beach preschools but because they are not our neighborhood school, we didn't get in -- limited room. "For any Portland kid" is not our experience.

I live in SW portland and am having trouble finding a PPS pre-k. I agree With AmyS "For any Portland kid" is not my experience either ... Every school is out of my "neighborhood school district"

Many (maybe even all?)of the PPS pre-k programs are in Title 1 schools.
PPS is also changing the critera for who is eligible for the pre-k programs starting for the 2010-11 school year. It used to be that if you lived within the school's boundaries, you could attend on a first come/first serve basis. Now, the district has been told that it's been out of compliance and will determine certain criteria (income level, other needs) to decide who will be able to enroll. April 15th is when PPS has said that they will inform potential families who need to know about the official new guidelines. So....if you have signed your child up and are anticipating that they will have a spot next year in a PPS pre-k, you might want to double check! There has been very little communication about this huge change that will effect many families.

When I inquired about the Pre-K programs I was told the PPS Pre-K programs are for low income families who must qualify for the federal Free and Reduced-priced Meals program to be eligible.

My daughter is starting the Richmond Pre-K program this fall. We entered the PPS lottery, no income qualifications. Now my daughter will be able to continue on at Richmond for the Japanese dual immersion program. She is ready to go to a bigger school coming from a small daycare. However, I think if you have a great preschool with a kindergarten there is no reason to switch to a pre-K or even K if you can afford it. When I looked into the other options it was my understanding anyone who lives in a Title One school boundary could apply to the free programs, and income level was a determining factor in acceptance. Pre-K is a great benefit for children who have not had preschool. Hopefully there will be more options in the future for all of us. I filled out a survey on the PPS website sharing my opinions about pre-K!

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