Today, Governor Kay Ivey and the Alabama Department of Early Childhood Education announced that the nationally-recognized, high quality Alabama First Class Pre-K program will add 55 new classrooms to 25 counties this fall.
With the $6 million appropriated for First Class Pre-K expansion in the FY2021 Education Trust Fund budget, the Department is able to fund 55 new classrooms with another 68 quality applications waiting for funding.
The Governor noted that the program will help children “build a strong foundation for their educational journey.”
With the addition of the new classrooms, the program will have a total of 1,250 classrooms serving 22,500 children statewide in the 2020-2021 school year, 38 percent of 4-year-old children.
An additional 110 teachers (lead and auxiliary) will be employed through this year’s First Class Pre-K program funding increase.
“Thank you to our state leaders for ensuring that even more children and their families are provided the high quality early learning experiences that will positively impact their educational attainment and future success,” said Secretary of Early Childhood Education Jeana Ross. “This important support for pre-k will keep many of our youngest learners from starting school already a year behind and keep educational inequities and achievement gaps from compounding in K-12. We are appreciative of legislative leadership who have committed to further expanding pre-k with any identified additional funds.”
Click here for the Governor’s full announcement.
Click here to view the 2020-21 First Class Pre-K Awards List.
Click here for a list of all pre-k sites for 2020-21.