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Quality preschool programs help build strong foundations for children’s physical, mental, emotional, and social development that prepare them for a lifetime.

Pre-K classes offer a safe environment that includes daily, structured academic lessons. Studies have shown that children who attend prekindergarten are more likely to succeed in school, more likely to graduate and more likely to go to college.

This is why parents have an important decision to make when their children reach pre-school age. It is not only the question of: should I send my child to Pre-K? but also: where can my child attend Pre-K?

Dallas ISD offers free Pre-K programs for children who are three- or four-years-old on or before September 1, 2018 and meet at least ONE of these requirements:

    1. The child is eligible to take part in the national free or reduced-price school lunch program. To find out if your child is eligible, click here.
    2. The child is unable to speak and comprehend the English language.
    3. The child is homeless.
  1. The child is a dependent of an active duty member of the U.S. armed forces.
  2. The child is or has been in foster care.

For children who do not meet one of the five eligibility requirements, a limited number of spots for tuition-paid Pre-K are available at several schools around the district, including Nathan Adams, Arthur Kramer, and Walnut Hill elementaries in District 1. Tuition is $525 per month per child.

Parents interested in a Dallas ISD Pre-K program for the 2018-2019 school year, can apply beginning on April 2. Visit your neighborhood campus or partner site and bring the required documents to receive a student ID number, which will allow the completion of the online registration application. A list of the required documents can be found at: prekdallas.org/en/tuition-pre-k/.

In other news, Destination Imagination teams from five schools in District 1, qualified for state tournament. Teams representing Harry Withers, George Bannerman Dealey, Jerry R. Junkins, and Arthur Kramer elementary schools and E. D. Walker Middle School, will compete in the state tournament in early April. In order to qualify, teams had to place first or second in their category after performing a team challenge and an instant challenge. Promoting creativity and teamwork to more than 100,000 schoolchildren across the United States, Destination Imagination is an educational program in which student teams solve open-ended challenges and present their solutions at tournament competitions.

And last but not least, I would like to invite all District 1 families to attend Discover Summer on Saturday, April, 7 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., at Emmett. J. Conrad High School. During this event, parents and students will be able to explore and discover all summer enrichment programs offered in Dallas ISD, to engage students in extended learning opportunities and keep them active during the summer months in fun and enriching ways.

Dustin Marshall is the District 2 representative on the Dallas ISD Board of Trustees.

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