Applying to VPK? Here’s what you need to know

Jan. 21, 2022 – As a school choice district, parents are able to apply for schools outside their child’s neighborhood school.

This includes parents who would like to enroll their child in a Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) program with Duval County Public Schools.

VPK is a free prekindergarten program for children ages 4 and 5. To be eligible, children must be age 4 on or before Sept. 1, 2022.

Below are five things to know about the VPK application process.

  1. The application deadline is Feb. 28, 2022 – Parents will need to apply online no later than 11:59 p.m. on Feb. 28, 2022, to be considered for admission in the fall.
  2. Applications for VPK are online – VPK applications are online. Follow these steps to apply:
    1. Create a Student ID for your child by completing this “Apply for Enrollment” form.
    2. Create a Parent/Guardian Account (you must have created a Student ID to complete this step)
    3. Email two proofs of ID to [email protected]. Include child’s name and Student ID in the email.
    4. Wait 24 – 48 hours for the VPK application to appear in the Parent/Guardian FOCUS account.
    5. In the online application, parents can select up to three VPK programs in order of preference that their child is eligible to attend.
  3. Eligible schools depend on Title 1 status – A child whose neighborhood elementary school is a Title I school can only attend a Title I VPK program. Similarly, a child whose neighborhood elementary school is a non-Title I school can only attend a non-Title I VPK program. Here is a list of VPK schools in the district along with their Title I status. To identify which school is your neighborhood school, use the School Locator.
  4. Notifications will be sent out in the spring – When parents submit an application, they are entering into a lottery process with other parents. In mid to late April, parents will receive an email with the results of the lottery. Students not accepted into their schools will be waitlisted. Waitlisted students may be contacted by one of the requested schools if an opening occurs.
  5. After acceptance, parents have until May 31 to visit the school to register – Parents will need to visit the school and provide copies of the following: Certificate of Eligibility from the Early Learning Coalition; Proof of Age (Birth Certificate); Proof of Residency; State of Florida Health Exam form; Florida Certificate of Immunization, and a signed fee schedule for Non-Title 1 sites. *Parents who do not complete the enrollment process and/or lack required documents by June 1 will lose their seats.

For additional information, including information about transportation, lottery preferences, and even the “potty policy,” visit the Early Childhood Learning webpage on the district’s website.

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