B-P eyes funding for pre-K program

BROADALBIN – The Broadalbin-Perth Central School District may apply for a state grant that would allow it to offer a prekindergarten program for 3-year-old children free of charge for district residents. But before doing so, district leaders want to hear from parents of preschoolers in the community.

B-P Director of Curriculum and Instruction/Grants Coordinator Terry LaFountain is asking all residents who are the parents or legal guardians of children who will be younger than 4 years old by Dec. 1 to complete an online survey, available at the district website, www.bpcsd.org, no later than July 17.

“It is very important that we hear from as many parents as possible, since the amount of funding our district is eligible to receive is based entirely on the number of children we project would enroll in a 3-year-old pre-K program,” LaFountain said in a news release.

Survey responses are not binding and do not qualify children for enrollment in a 3-year-old pre-K program at B-P, LaFountain said. However, the district asks for parent contact information as well as child’s name and date of birth near the end of the survey, which LaFountain said the district will use to initiate the student registration process if it moves forward with a 3-year-old pre-K program.

The state funding Broadalbin-Perth is considering is through the Extended Prekindergarten for Three- and Four-Year Old Students in High-Need School Districts program, announced by the New York State Education Department on June 26.

Broadalbin-Perth is eligible to apply for funding that would allow the district to offer full- and/or half-day options for 3-year-old prekindergarten starting in January 2016.

In future years, a 3-year-old pre-K program at B-P would be offered throughout the school year.

District leaders will keep community members updated on the status of this opportunity through the district website, social media and direct e-mail with parents of current students, as well as contacting parents and guardians who complete the survey.