Kentucky's preschool education programs are available for all four-year-old children whose family income is no more than 160% of poverty; all three and four-year-old children with developmental delays and disabilities, regardless of income; and other four-year- old children as placements are available based on district decision.
The preschool program is designed to be developmentally appropriate for young children. "Developmentally appropriate" is defined in law to mean that the program focuses on the child's physical, intellectual, social and emotional development, including interpersonal, intrapersonal, and socialization skills.
Kentucky's primary program is that part of the elementary school program in which children are enrolled from the time they begin school until they are ready to enter the intermediate program (fourth grade). The primary program includes the following critical attributes: continuous progress; developmentally appropriate educational practices; authentic assessment; multiage and multiability classrooms; qualitative reporting methods; professional teamwork; and positive parent involvement.
Student Placement in the Primary Program
Placement of students has always been at the discretion of the local district, provided they can assure they are meeting the child’s developmental needs. Through KRS 158.031, districts may advance students through the primary program when it is in the best educational interest of the child. The process districts must follow is identified in 702 KAR 7:125 Section 7 (2) (a through d), and it applies to students who are at least five but less than six years of age. The principal/school district always has the final decision on student placement (KRS 158.140) and there is no statutory or regulatory provision for an appeal process. More guidance may be found in the
Student Placement guidance document.
Please email the School Readiness branch for questions regarding Preschool/Early Learning (PreK).