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Acquiring and Using Voluntary Preschool Vouchers

by T Akery | May 14th, 2013 | Preschool

kids barcodeSome States such as Florida have a state run program for four-year-olds. This program entitles your preschoolers to attend preschool for free. If your State supports this type of program, you need to be aware of what getting a voucher entails. For most of these programs, your child has to turn four before the fall cutoff date. If your preschooler’s birthday is in the beginning of the year, you will have to wait until they are almost five before they can acquire these vouchers.

You want to start really early with vouchers. The main reason is that preschools only have a limited number of spots available. If you have already chosen a preschool and it is a popular one, spaces will fill up very quickly. So, scout out your preschools in the fall before your child turns four. This is the time when many schools hold open houses. Other open houses will be hosted in the spring right about the time the vouchers become available. It is fine to shop around these open houses. But don’t wait too long to make up your mind. The clock is ticking from the moment the vouchers are issued.

Make sure you arrive at the designated voucher area with all of your preschooler’s paperwork in hand. You will need a certified copy of their birth certificate. At this time, you do not need to provide shot records. You may need additional things such as your driver’s license and proof of residency like a utility bill. Many people forget to bring their own ID. Don’t leave home without it. Otherwise, you won’t get the voucher. This is checked during the process.

Arrive at the official voucher place area. Long lines will form quickly. Getting there early gets you a decent place in line. Plus, you can reserve your preschool spot before other parents have had a chance to get through the line.

It is best to leave your preschooler with a babysitter for the duration. Yes, there will be other kids around. But it can get boring for preschoolers if they are forced to wait in line too long. This can lead to your kid throwing fits or acting up. If you do have to bring them, plan ahead with snacks and quiet toys. Make sure you take your preschooler to the potty before you get in line. Some people may save your spot in line. Others aren’t as gracious. It is best not to test the patience of other parents especially if they have a cranky preschooler.

For questions about when and where, you will need to look at the education website for your particular State.

Preschools will use these vouchers to reserve a spot in the program. You don’t have to have all your paperwork when you hand these vouchers in. But getting them in early will make it much easier and you will get your preschooler into the preschool you want instead of having to settle for whatever is left.

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