Program Types & Eligilbility
When you complete the Durham PreK Application, you are applying for a pre-K seat in the following types of pre-K classrooms:
- Durham Public School (DPS)
- Durham Head Start (DHS)
- Community-based licensed programs
What do they have in common?
- Birth-Kindergarten licensed teachers
- Research-based curriculum that values play to keep children engaged and excited about learning
- High-quality learning environment
- 5-star rating from NC Division of Child Development and Early Education
- Low student-teacher ratios
Does Durham have a universal pre-K application?
- Children are considered for all public pre-K seats in Durham County (except for Watts and Morehead Magnet Schools, which use the DPS magnet application)
- Pre-K partners identify the most appropriate classroom for your child
Overall Eligibility Requirements
- Children must be Durham County Residents
- Children must turn 4 years old by August 31 of the applying school year
What is considered during child placement?
The Pre-K Partners (DPS, DPfC, FCR, and CCSA) consider the following information for child placement:
- Designated address (home or work, indicated by applying parent or guardian). DPS can only consider a family's home address for placement.
- Sibling school location
- Family's school preferences. Families are able to select their top 3 choices within their application based on their program eligibility.
- IMPORTANT NOTES:
- Preferences cannot be guaranteed.
- Families can indicate a preference to be placed with DPS, but cannot select specific DPS sites.
- IMPORTANT NOTES:
Each applicant child will be considered for all classroom types they are eligible for based on the requirements listed below.
Program Types and Eligibility
|PreK Partner Program||Income Eligibility||Program Specific Eligibility||Site Locations|
|Head Start||Public Schools||Community-based Licensed Programs|
|Families at all income levels are eligible. Families with incomes at 400% Federal Poverty Level or above will pay a monthly parent fee of 2% of monthly income.*||All families are eligible. Priority is given to families that meet priority criteria.**||YES||YES||YES|
|Families must make less than 75% of the state median income.||Some families with incomes over the eligibility requirement may qualify if they meet other priority criteria.**||YES||YES||YES|
|Families must make less than 130% of the Federal Poverty Level.*||Some families with incomes over the eligibility requirement may qualify if they meet other priority criteria.**||YES||NO||NO|
|Families at all income levels are eligible.||All families are eligible for The Whitted School. For Title I seats, must apply by mid-May deadline (date varies by year), and show academic need through a completed developmental screening.||NO||YES||NO|
* Federal Poverty Level - “An economic measure used to decide whether the income level of an individual or family qualifies them for certain federal benefits and programs.“ Find more information here.
** Priority Criteria may include children with disabilities, academic need, chronic health conditions, or limited English proficiency, children in foster care, families receiving TANF or SSI, children experiencing homelessness, military families.