This story was originally published by Community Impact Newspaper, and can be found here. Written by: Danica Smithwick.
Full-day pre-K for eligible students kicked off Monday, Jan. 6, at 50 of Cy-Fair ISD’s 56 elementary school campuses.
Texas lawmakers passed House Bill 3 in 2019, reforming the state’s school finance system and requiring school districts that previously offered half-day pre-K programming to offer full-day programs to students who meet certain requirements starting in 2019-20.
Chief Academic Officer Linda Macias said 3,729 students were enrolled in the full-day program—up from 3,388 students enrolled in the half-day program last fall.
“Pre-K students will have additional time to work with hands-on and engaging lessons to support children in language, literacy, mathematics, science inquiry and cognitive skills in the full-day program,” she said.
The district’s before- and after-school program Club Rewind offers child care to preschoolers whose parents work during the day.
Since announcing the expansion plan in August 2019, the district has hired 74 additional preschool teachers as well as 73 paraprofessionals. Chief Financial Officer Karen Smith said the district projects spending $12 million-$13 million in state funding in the full-day program’s first year of implementation.
Officials said up to 7,000 students living in the district could meet qualifications to be eligible for the program, including being 4 years old by Sept. 1 and being either economically disadvantaged, an English language learner, homeless, part of a military family or in the foster care system.
Learn more about CFISD’s pre-K programming at www.cfisd.net.