MYNORTHWEST NEWS

Harrell’s office announces Seattle preschool slots for thousands of kids

Mar 18, 2024, 7:45 PM | Updated: 7:47 pm

Photo: On Monday, Mayor Bruce Harrell announced there will be 16 new preschool classrooms across Se...

On Monday, Mayor Bruce Harrell announced there will be 16 new preschool classrooms across Seattle. (Photo courtesy of Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell's Office)

(Photo courtesy of Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell's Office)

Thousands more Seattle families will have the opportunity to start their children’s education a bit earlier, thanks to a new program launching.

On Monday, Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell announced 16 new preschool classrooms will open across the city.

It’s an expansion to the city’s existing Seattle Preschool Program (SPP), which gives free tuition to many applicants.

New Seattle preschool classrooms open opportunities for nearly 2,500 kids

According to Harrell’s office, the city is investing up to $3.5 million to expand SPP classrooms. This will open up nearly 2,500 slots for kids citywide.

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“Bringing affordable preschool education to Seattle families is vital for our region. A lot of families are still recuperating from the economic hardships of the pandemic, an increase in the cost of living and putting food on the table,” Department of Education and Early Learning Director, Dwane Chappelle, said in a news release. “If we can remove one less burden like supporting their child’s education through tuition assistance, then we are happy to provide an investment that will set up students for success especially in their formative years of life.”

According to the mayor’s office, tuition will be based on household income and family size, with most families qualifying for free or reduced tuition.

Of the 16 classrooms, nine are brand new locations, five are at existing SPP locations and two are graduating from an SPP Pathway classroom to full SPP implementation models.

The SPP’s goal is advancing educational equity, the news release states.

“Providing affordable and high-quality education programs for our city’s kids ensures they are set up for success as they embark on their academic journey,” said Harrell in a news release. “By continuing to invest in more Seattle Preschool Program classrooms with inclusive curriculum and dedicated educators, we will reach even more families next school year. I invite all Seattle families with 3- and 4-year-old children to apply today, so that our city’s young learners are on the path to a bright future.”

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SPP applications now available for 2024-2025 school year

Applications for the 2024-25 school year are now available online.

Parents can learn more about SPP and apply on the City of Seattle’s website.

Those interested in finding a preschool nearby should visit the SPP provider map.

Contributing: Frank Sumrall

Julia Dallas is a content editor at MyNorthwest. You can read her stories here. Follow Julia on X, formerly known as Twitter, here and email her here.

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