First Class Pre-K

First Class: Alabama's Voluntary Pre-K is part of the Office of School Readiness within our department. First Class Pre-K provides effective, high quality early childhood experiences that prepare Alabama's children for school success and lifelong learning.     

Office of School Readiness defines school readiness as a condition whereby children enter school with:      
• an enthusiasm for learning,
• an ability to function in a a social setting,
• age-appropriate communication and problem solving skills,
• age-appropriate physical and emotional skills, and
• optimal health.

 Why High-Quality Pre-Kindergarten?                                                                                                 

Numerous studies have shown that students who have participated in high-quality pre-kindergarten programs:

• are less likely to repeat a grade, require remedial education, or be placed in special education,
• score higher on achievement tests,
• are more likely to graduate from high-school and go on to college
• get higher paying salaries as adults, and
• are more likely to stay out of prison and off welfare.

 


All First Class Pre-K Programs are required to adhere to DHR Minimum Standards for playground safety, but NAEYC Guidelines are recommended .

In addition, the following resources may prove useful when considering the development and design of the outdoor play space for pre-K children. These resources refer to best practices, developmentally appropriate materials, safety requirements, etc.

Department of Human Resources (DHR) Minimum Standards

http://dhr.alabama.gov/documents/MinimumStandards_DayCare.pdf

National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)

https://www.naeyc.org/sites/default/files/globally-shared/downloads/PDFs/accreditation/early-learning/naeyc_early_learning_program_accreditation_standards_and_assessment_items.pdf

Public Playground Safety Handbook

https://eclkc.ohs.acf.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/pdf/cos-playground-safety.pdf

Community Investment Collaborative for Kids Resource Guide

http://www.lisc.org/media/filer_public/c6/c8/c6c8b045-d3c9-46ad-ab6d-65d6b807a666/2005_cick_guide_vol4_playgrounds.pdf

United States Consumer Product Safety Commission

https://www.cpsc.gov/safety-education/safety-guides/playgrounds/public-playground-safety-checklist


 

First Class Pre-K Across the State of Alabama in 8 Regions     

Click the 2018-2019 map below to view the First Class Pre-K Classrooms