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Enrollment opens for Miami-Dade early childhood, VPK programs; deadline approaching

Miami-Dade VPK deadline approaching
Miami-Dade VPK deadline approaching 01:15

MIAMI — Enrollment for Miami-Dade County Public Schools' early childhood and Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) programs is open, but the deadly is approaching fast.

MDCPS has launched its "Ready, Set, Enroll!" campaign this morning with a variety of early childhood education and VPK programs for the 2024-2025 school year.

Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK)

Florida's VPK is a free program that prepares children for kindergarten and beyond that is available in more than 200 schools countywide, MDCPS stated. However, kids must be 4 years old on or before September 1 of any year to enroll.

The program uses a lottery to select students. After submitting proof of birth and address to their home/neighborhood school before the February 23 deadline, families will be entered into the VPK lottery. Children whose names are drawn from the lottery will be selected to attend. After the lottery date, seats may be available at some schools.

Parents whose children were not selected at their home school will receive information regarding an online off-cycle lottery opportunity to secure a seat for their child, MDCPS noted.

For assistance, parents can contact the Department of Early Childhood Programs at (305) 995-7632, and a required 2024 VPK Program Certificate of Eligibility may be obtained online at the Department of Early Learning Coalition.

Head Start and Early Head Start

Also provided in partnership with Miami-Dade County Community Action and Human Services, the MDCPS Head Start and Early Head Start are federally funded, comprehensive, child development programs that serve children from birth to age 5 from income-eligible families. Additionally, children with disabilities are included in the programs and receive a full range of developmental services.

Enrollment for both programs are accepted year-round, and parents can find more information about them at or

Pre-K ESE Role Models

There is also the Pre-K ESE Role Models Program, where general education role model students are needed for a limited number of slots across the district. This program offers free, full-day or half-day opportunities for qualifying students. Students are eligible on their third birthday and must have age-appropriate language and social skills because they will serve as models for children with disabilities, MDCPS stated.

The Pre-K ESE cirriculum is robust and offers students an opportunity to learn pre-reading, math, science and social studies, as well as develop their social skills in a school setting. Parents can learn more about the program by contacting their home/neighborhood school or call the Pre-K ESE office at (305) 271-5701.

Role models in the Reverse Mainstream program are invited to attend school for a few days in the spring so that teachers may determine their readiness for the program. For more information, visit or call (305) 995-7632.

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