Last week, Seattle Department of Education and Early Learning Director Dwane Chappelle announced the opening of Seattle Preschool Program applications for the 2022-23 school year.

This year, the city’s award-winning preschool program will expand with seven additional classrooms and 144 additional seats to provide high-quality preschool programming for Seattle 3- and 4-year-olds. Two of the new classrooms will offer dual-language programming, and two will offer SPP Plus, which provides inclusive programming for children with disabilities. A full list of programs and application materials is available at www.seattle.gov/applySPP, where in-language applications are also available. Families who need language assistance to complete the application process can contact DEEL at 206-386-1050 or email preschool@seattle.gov.

Seattle Preschool Program is offered by the city’s Department of Education and Early Learning in partnership with community-based providers and Seattle Public Schools, with 88 program sites available across the city. With funding from the seven-year Families, Education, Preschool, and Promise Levy, SPP is on track to serve more than 2,500 children by 2026. The number of slots available for the upcoming 2022-23 school year will increase to 2,144. SPP tuition is free for most Seattle families, with rates for higher income families calculated based on household income and family size.

To better support student learning during the pandemic, DEEL has provided more than 8,700 home learning kits for SPP families to encourage parent engagement and support sensory exploration and important foundations for learning and development. DEEL is also offering providers the opportunity to extend SPP programming into the summer months for the second year in a row to provide children with supplemental learning opportunities to help them succeed in kindergarten despite the interruptions many experienced throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year, an additional classroom at Magnolia Elementary will be available and will offer SPP Plus.

Throughout the pandemic, SPP providers modified their programming and classrooms to align with the latest COVID-19 health and safety protocols from health officials in order to keep children, families and program staff safe. As public health guidance continues to shift based on local case levels, SPP classrooms will continue to follow local guidelines.

All families living in Seattle who have a child who will be either 3 or 4 years old by Aug. 31 are eligible to apply. For more information on the Seattle Preschool Program, visit www.seattle.gov/education.