Act 166 of 2014 provides for universal access to publicly funded prekindergarten education. All public and private prekindergarten education programs, including Head Start and public school operated programs, must meet specific requirements to operate a PreK program in Vermont. The Agency of Education, in collaboration with the Agency of Human Services, created administrative rules to guide Act 166 implementation.
Statewide Prekindergarten Tuition Rate
This amount is adjusted each year by the New England Economic Project cumulative price index for state and local government purchases of goods and services. Districts paying tuition for prekindergarten education on behalf of a prekindergarten child to a prequalified prekindergarten education program (private or public) shall pay at the statewide rate for 10 hours per week for 35 weeks annually.
- The statewide 2017/18 school year Prekindergarten Tuition Rate is $3,178.00.
- The statewide 2016/17 school year Prekindergarten Tuition Rate is $3,092.00.
- The statewide 2015/16 school year Prekindergarten Tuition Rate is $3,000.00.
- Models Used to Arrive at Statewide PreK Tuition Rate
Implementing a Prekindergarten Education Program
Frequently Asked Questions
- Parents: What does Vermont’s Universal Pre-Kindergarten Law Mean for You?
- School Districts: What Does Act 166 Mean for You?
- Community-Based Early Childhood Programs: What Does Act 166 Mean for You?
All public and private prekindergarten education programs, including Head Start and public school operated programs, must apply for prequalification status, whether the program is an existing program or a new program. Prior qualification does not apply.
Apply for Prequalification
All applications to become a prequalified provider MUST be submitted online. The Agency of Education and the Department for Children and Families will review completed applications, determine eligibility, and notify applicants within 30 business days.
- Application for Prequalification as a Prekindergarten Education Program
- Look Up Your Educator ID Number
- Submit a Correction to Your Prequalification Application
- Prequalified Providers: Update Your Information
Programs must have 4 STARS with 2 points in each of the arenas in Vermont's Step Ahead Recognition System to be prequalified. A program with 3 STARS or a program with 4 STARS without 2 points in each arena may provide prekindergarten education if they have an approved plan to meet the required program quality standards. Complete the online Plan to Achieve 4 STARS form and submit to Melissa Riegel-Garrett.
Required Prekindergarten Child Assessments
All publicly funded prekindergarten programs are required to report on the progress of children on an annual basis using the online Teaching Strategies GOLD child assessment.
Even though AOE and AHS monitor prequalified PreK programs compliance with Act 166, school districts will still need to establish an agreement with each of their partner programs.
Public School: Establishing Regions, Establishing Programs, Expanding Programs
Prior approval from the Agencies of Education and Human Services must be received before a school district may establish or expand a school operated prekindergarten education program or create a prekindergarten education region. This new requirement applies to all school districts and replaces the community needs assessment districts were required to complete under Act 62.
Act 166 provides for the establishment of geographic limitations or “Prekindergarten Regions” in which a school board may choose to propose to limit the geographic area within which it will pay tuition for prekindergarten education.
- List of Approved Regions and Applications to Establish a Region Under Review
- Sample Application to Establish a PreK Region - Applications to establish a PreK Region beginning with the 17/18 school year are due November 15, 2016. Decisions on establishing a PreK Region will be made by February 15, 2017.
- Apply Online to Establish a PreK Region
- Proposed Region Number of Programs Report Template
- Bordering Districts Number of Programs Template
Establishment or Expansion of a Public School Operated Program
Responses to completed applications to establish or expand a program will be provided within 30 business days from submission of a complete application. Only applications submitted online will be accepted.
- Preview the Establishing a Public School Operated PreK Education Program Application
- Apply Online to Establish a Public School Operated PreK Education Program