JOHNSTOWN — Open enrollment for the 54 pre-K spots available in the Greater Johnstown School District for the 2023-24 school year will take place from Feb. 13-17.
Open enrollment for pre-K and kindergarten will be available to district families at the Junior-Senior High School registration office from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. each day the week of Feb. 13.
To be eligible to apply for pre-K, district children must be 4 years old on or before Dec. 1, 2023. To be eligible to register for kindergarten, children must be 5 years old on or before the same date.
“The district has made a commitment to funding three full-day pre-K programs for the foreseeable future and I would really urge parents to take advantage of enrolling in this program,” Johnstown Superintendent Dr. William Crankshaw said on Monday. “Next year it will be housed at Pleasant Avenue (Elementary), which will also house our kindergarten and first grade levels. That will be our primary building. I think it will be a really important opportunity to have that pre-K experience with the influence of kindergarten in the same building, then moving onto first grade.”
The district currently houses the full-day pre-K program in the Knox Building, but the superintendent believes it will be beneficial to move all three grades to the same facility in time for the next school year.
“It’s going to be a great opportunity for a continuous flow of learning and teaching for these kids,” Crankshaw said. “The sooner we can get students in that environment learning, the better.”
The deadline for families to submit completed applications with the necessary documentation for the pre-K program is March 10.
If more than 54 pre-K applications are received by March 10, a lottery will take place on March 15 at the Knox Building to determine which students will get the 54 spots in the program.
“Typically we have more folks enrolling than we have room for,” Crankshaw said on Monday. “I hope that’s not always the case. I hope the state of New York proceeds to fund the pre-K program as a true universal pre-K program and the federal government too, because it’s really a federal program.”
For district families with a child who is currently enrolled in the 2022-23 pre-K program, the student’s family will not need to complete the registration process for kindergarten for the 2023-2024 school year.
“The greatest benefit of pre-K in my opinion is bringing children into a rigorous learning environment that is also high in play-learning as well,” Crankshaw said. “So it’s a critical socialization period that brings the families in our community together earlier. But more importantly I think our students in pre-K will have that advantage of having that leg up on the institution of school ahead of kindergarten. Especially for the social benefits.”