Voluntary Pre-K Program

Voluntary Prekindergarten Program Information

Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) began as a constitutional amendment passed by Florida voters in November 2002 and signed into law January 2, 2005. It is designed to prepare every four-year-old in Florida for kindergarten and build the foundation for their educational success. The VPK program gives each child an opportunity to perform better in school and throughout life with quality programs that include high quality standards, accountability, appropriate curricula, substantial instruction periods, manageable class sizes, and qualified instructors. All eligible four-year-olds are entitled to participate in one of the VPK program options.

Highlights of the VPK Program
The VPK program is a FREE for all four-year-olds born on or before September 1 each year who reside in Florida. The program has high quality standards that include:

  • Qualified instructors
  • Age appropriate curricula with a strong emphasis on early literacy skills
  • Manageable class sizes

VPK Program Options
Parental choice is a priority; therefore, both private and public providers may participate. VPK providers have flexibility in structuring the hours per day and days per week to meet the required instructional hours:

  • School Year Program - 540 instructional hours. Class sizes not to exceed 20 students; instructors must have a minimum of a National Child Development Associate credential or Florida Child Care Professional Certificate.
  • Summer Program - 300 instructional hours. Class sizes not to exceed 12 students; instructors must have a minimum of a Bachelor's degree.
  • VPK Specialized Instructional Services Education Program - Takes place outside a traditional classroom setting and is for 4-year-olds with special needs who have current individualized educational plans from their local school districts. Click here for additional information: http://www.floridaearlylearning.com/sites/www/Uploads/files/Parents/ADA_Compliant-2013-VPK_SIS_FactSheet.pdf

Oversight of the VPK Program

The Coalition administers the VPK Program at the local level, which includes verifying the qualifications of early learning providers, providing families with enrollment support, and ensuring that the legislative requirements of the VPK Program are met. The day-to-day management of the program is the responsibility of the Office of Early Learning (OEL); licensing and credentialing is the responsibility of the Department of Children and Families (DCF); and the creation of standards, curriculum, as well as accountability is the responsibility of the Florida Department of Education (FDOE). These three agencies work together to provide leadership and support to the local early learning coalitions, school districts, public and private providers to ensure the successful implementation of quality programs for Florida’s 4-year-old children.

To apply online, visit https://familyservices.floridaearlylearning.com/Account/Login.

For additional information or to receive a current listing of VPK providers in your area, contact your local Coalition office.

 

Crystal River Office
Chiefland Office
Sumterville Office
382 N Suncoast Blvd. 117 NE 1st St. 617 S US Hwy. 301, Suite E
Crystal River, FL 34429 Chiefland, FL 32626 Sumterville, FL 33585
(352) 563-9939 (352) 490-5855 (352) 793-5430
(352) 563-5933 fax (352) 490-6762 fax (352) 793-6230 fax
(877) 336-5437 toll free (877) 336-5437 toll free (877) 336-5437 toll free

Hours:
Mon – Thurs 8:00a.m.  – 5:00p.m.
Friday 8:00a.m. – 2:00p.m.