OLIVE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — More affordable and even free preschools are coming to Ottawa County thanks to an expansion for the state’s Great Start Readiness Program.
Ottawa Area Intermediate School District Assistant Director Patty Beatty said the district was able to fund 10 additional classrooms in the area.
“We are actually able to enroll children who are four years old by Dec. 1 of this school year, with families that make up to 400% of the federal poverty line,” she said.
Which means a family of four whose household income is $120,000 or less qualifies for free preschool.
“One of the things I think people don’t often think of with a child going to preschool are some of those social skills,” Beatty said. “How do I interact with others? How do I make friends? How do I play collaboratively with others?”
The Great Start Readiness program is part of Michigan’s state-funded program that factors in families who may be at risk of educational failure.
The additional funding OAISD received will also go towards classroom startup costs, including furniture cost and teacher certifications.
“In our classrooms we always have a minimum of two teachers in there and that have degrees in early childhood,” she said.
Enrollment is open with spots still available. Beatty told News 8 that the district is helping a record number of families this year with more than 1,000 children enrolled in free preschool currently.
For more information on if your family qualifies, visit the Ottawa Area ISD website.