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Dozens Of State Pre-K Grants Still Available In Monroe County

Students work on art projects at Busy Bees Academy, a public preschool in Columbus.

Photo: Elle Moxley / StateImpact Indiana

A bill signed earlier this year expanded the state-funded Pre-K program to 15 additional counties.

Monroe County parents are being encouraged to apply for Indiana’s state-funded preschool program before it starts on January 1. On My Way Pre-K provides tuition-free education grants for as many as 50 Monroe County families, but so far only 14 have applied.

On My Way Pre-K Project Manager Crystal Moore says the purpose of the program is to prepare 4-year-olds from families with low incomes for kindergarten.

“It was successful enough that legislation extended the grant opportunity and provided more opportunities and funding to extend it to 15 additional counties,” Moore says.

Gov. Eric Holcomb signed a bill in June that expanded On My Way Pre-K from five counties to 20. Legislators initially authorized the program in 2015.

Families must meet certain qualifications in order to be eligible for the tuition assistance. Their household income must be below 127 percent of the federal poverty level and the child being enrolled must be four years old as of August 1, 2017.

Moore says the state’s only awarded one grant in Monroe County so far.

“We’re trying very hard to reach families to spread the information so that they can take advantage of this opportunity,” she says.

Families can apply online and find out immediately if they are eligible for the program.

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