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Free Full-Day Kindergarten FAQs

What is the benefit of full-day kindergarten?

Kindergarten is currently not a requirement in Colorado. However, research shows that starting students on their academic path in Kindergarten (ages 5-6) promotes children's enthusiasm, initiative, persistence, and engagement in learning and helps children enter formal schooling more eager to learn and ready to succeed.

What if I already enrolled in half-day kindergarten?

You may stay in half-day or choose to enroll your student in free full-day kindergarten. Kindergarten students are guaranteed a full-day kindergarten spot at his/her designated neighborhood school. Choice enrolled kindergarten students may move from half-day to full-day kindergarten if there is space available.

Which schools have most capacity?

Capacity is determined at the school level. Please contact your school of interest to inquire about capacity and availability for your new kindergartener.

As of May 24, the following schools informed us they have room for more full-day kindergarten students (though there are others as well):

Arvada: Arvada K8, Fremont, Fitzmorris, Peck, Swanson, Two Roads Charter
Evergreen: Wilmot, Bergen Meadow
Lakewood: Eiber, Foothills, Lasley, Rose Stein, South Lakewood
Littleton: Colorow, Dutch Creek, Leawood, Mortensen (limited), Peiffer, Stony Creek, Westridge
Westminster: Lukas

What is the waitlist and how does it work?

A waitlist is created when enrollment reaches grade-level capacity at a school. EnrollJeffco creates and manages waitlists. As families apply and the open seats are filled, a waitlist is automatically created. As soon as a space becomes available, the seat space is filled with the next student on the EnrollJeffco waitlist according to priority policy. Families will receive an email (and a text, if preferred) from every school to which they applied. The notification will either be an offer to enroll or information about the student’s placement on the school’s waitlist.

How do I enroll or change my enrollment from half-day to full-day?

Go to EnrollJeffco to change your enrollment or enroll for the first time. Click on the Apply Now button. Indicate you would like the full-day kindergarten program at your assigned neighborhood school (guaranteed) or apply for a different neighborhood, option, or charter school (space available basis).

All Jeffco Public Schools students need a Jeffco Connect account to use the EnrollJeffco system. All students have an assigned neighborhood school, or may apply for a different neighborhood school, option school, or charter school now through early August. If you choice enroll and space is not available, you receive a “waitlist” position.

What if I choice enrolled for half-day and there is not room for additional full-day students at my school? What is the "waitlist"?

Your options are (1) keep your half-day spot and be placed on the waitlist for a full-day spot (2) enroll at your assigned neighborhood school for a guaranteed spot, or (3) choice enroll to another school with room.

If your student is on a waitlist, you will remain on that waitlist through Round 2 and be sent an offer if space becomes available anytime during that window. If you accept a waitlist offer, any previously accepted offer is automatically released to other students if needed.

 

What if I already paid for full-day kindergarten - will I get a refund?

Yes. Contact your school's financial secretary to process this request.

Why was kindergarten not free until now?

In the past, Jeffco Public Schools offered free half-day programs and full-day programs at an additional cost. Full-day kindergarten expenses were covered by tuition paid by families, unless families qualified for assistance or the school they attended funded full-day kindergarten in another way. Prior to the enactment of House Bill 1262, the State of Colorado’s school finance formula only funded kindergarten students at 58 percent of the rate that it paid for full-time older students in other grades. In most cases, this was not enough to cover the costs of tuition-free full-day kindergarten. With the May 2019 passage of House Bill 1262, the state will now fund students enrolled in a full-day kindergarten program at the same amount as students enrolled full-time in other grades, starting in Fall 2019.

I can't get into Jeffco Connect or EnrollJeffco to view my student's status.

Please contact the school you wish to attend for assistance. There is a navigation bar at the top left of this webpage - Select a School - to find your school's contact information. 

Is half-day kindergarten still available?

Yes, half-day kindergarten programs are still provided. Enrollment numbers and availability at schools varies. Please contact your chosen school for options.

Is half-day kindergarten still funded?

Yes. The state will still fund half-day kindergarten students at 58 percent of the rate that it paid for full-time older students in other grades. 

How do I know what schools offer this program?

All Jeffco schools with kindergarten will offer free full-day and half-day options. Students may attend their assigned neighborhood school, or apply to attend a different neighborhood, option, or charter school.

How does this work with Free or Reduced Meals?

Jeffco Public Schools is pleased to offer healthy meals every school day, and your child(ren) may qualify for free or reduced-price meals. To apply, please complete the Free & Reduced Meals application. Free & reduced meals students may also qualify for other assistance; indicate on the application that you consent to the disclosure of the application information for consideration of other school district/program fee waivers.

 

How is free full-day kindergarten funded?

Jeffco Public Schools is funded by the State of Colorado and local property taxes. The state uses a formula to determine how much funding our school district receives per student; local support is a set amount. See our budget information for details.

How is free full-day kindergarten staffed?

Since Jeffco Public Schools has offered full-day kindergarten for several years, many of our staffing needs are already in place. The increased funding from the state will provide resources for additional staff to meet appropriate student-staff ratios, and will also support music, art, physical education, and other programs for our kindergarten students.

What are my options for before/after school care?

Our schools have a variety of options for before-and-after school care. Learn more about programs options.

What if I am undecided about full-day or half-day kindergarten?

Starting school in Jeffco is a 3-step process:

  • Create an account for parent and student information in Jeffco Connect.

  • Enroll in a school and program in EnrollJeffco.

  • Complete registration into your chosen school prior to school starting, usually done in the first two weeks of August every year.

If you are still undecided on what's best for your family, Jeffco encourages parents to create a student account in Jeffco Connect and then enroll in EnrollJeffco for what you are most likely to do when school starts. You can change your enrollment up until early August. 

What if I want to start in half-day kindergarten and 'roll up' to full-day during the school year?

Kindergarten students are guaranteed a full-day kindergarten spot at his/her designated neighborhood school. Choice enrolled kindergarten students may move from half-day to full-day kindergarten if there is space available.

 

When does kindergarten start for 2019-20 school year?

The first day of classes for all Jeffco schools is Wednesday, August 14.
Find calendars

For more information about free full-day kindergarten, please contact your school or the school you are interested in attending.

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