Pre-K Schools

Pre-K Application Period Is Open!

If you live in New York City and your child was born in 2011, he or she is eligible to attend a free, high quality pre-K program in September 2015. You can use the School Search tool to find pre-k in your area. The application period runs from Monday, March 16, 2015 to Friday, April 24, 2015.

Stay on this page to learn more about pre-K admissions or click "Apply Now" to go to the application site.

Apply Now

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    Is My Child Eligible for Pre-K?

    All children born in 2011 who live in New York City are eligible for pre-K starting in September 2015. Students with disabilities are encouraged to participate in the pre-K admissions process. (Learn more about pre-K admissions for students who require special education services).


    Is Pre-K Free?

    Yes. All pre-K programs offered through the NYC Department of Education and its partners are free.


    What Pre-K Programs Are Available?

    Pre-K programs are available at NYC Department of Education district schools, NYC Early Education Centers (NYCEECs), and charter schools. Some district programs provide a Dual Language option that offers instruction in two languages—half in English and half in the target language—with the aim of enabling students to become bilingual. Some NYCEECs provide Enhanced Language Instruction that supports language development in the native languages spoken by children.


    How Do I Find Pre-K Programs?

    Download both the Pre-K Directory and Directory Update or search online using the Pre-K Finder. You can also learn about Pre-K in your neighborhood by attending one of our events.

    Translated pre-K resources are available online and at Family Welcome Center in nine languages:


    What Are NYC Early Education Centers (NYCEECs)?

    NYCEECs (previously called community-based early childhood centers) are organizations that partner with the NYC Department of Education to provide free, high-quality pre-K programs.


    How Do I Apply to Pre-K?

    There are three ways to apply:

    You can use the same application for pre-K programs at all district schools and full-day NYCEECs. You can choose up to 12 programs and list them in order of preference. You can update and resubmit your application until the April 24, 2015 deadline.

    The online application is available in 10 languages. If you apply over the phone or in person, interpretation services are available in over 200 languages.

    How Do I Apply to Half-Day NYCEEC Programs or Charter Schools?

    If you’re interested in half-day NYCEEC pre-K programs or charter school pre-K programs, please contact those sites directly.

    Are Pre-K Admissions First-Come First-Served?

    No. You may submit your application anytime between Monday, March 16, 2015 and April 24, 2015.

    When Will I Learn About My Pre-K Placement?

    You will receive a decision letter with a single offer in June 2015. If you don’t receive your first choice, your child is automatically placed on a waitlist for all programs that you ranked higher on your application than the program where you received an offer. If you don’t receive an offer, there will be additional opportunities to find a pre-K program with a seat for your child.

    Where Can I Get More Information about Pre-K?

    For more information, call 718-935-2009 for further assistance. You can also sign up for email updates, follow us on Twitter, and like us on Facebook.

    For more information relating to our enhanced oversight of pre-K programs and inspection history, visit DOHMH Child Care Connect.