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Additional FAQs about Early Childhood Education

 
  1. Are school districts required to provide transportation for a prekindergarten program?
  2. What is the purpose of the prekindergarten program?
  3. Do prekindergarten programs have to comply with child-care licensing standards?
  4. When was the law for prekindergarten education enacted?
  5. What is the distinction between Prekindergarten (PK), Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD), and Early Education (EE)?
  6. What is the distinction between Texas Education Code (TEC) , Texas Administrative Code (TAC) , and Student Attendance Accounting Handbook ( SAAH )?
  7. What are the requirements for starting a prekindergarten program and/or child care facility that’s not associated with a school district or open-enrollment charter school?
  8. May State Compensatory (52% direct cost) Education (SCE) fund prekindergarten?
  9. May SCE (52% direct cost)funds be used to fund a prekindergarten program for students who do not meet the at-risk criteria?
  10. Does TEA have any resources on Foster Care?

1. Are school districts required to provide transportation for a prekindergarten program?

  •  No, but transportation, if provided, is included for funding purposes as part of the regular transportation system.  
  •  Citation: TEC §29.153(c)  

2. What is the purpose of the prekindergarten program?

  • A school district’s prekindergarten program shall be designed to develop skills necessary for success in the regular public school curriculum, including language, mathematics, and social skills.  
  • Citation: TEC §29.1532(a)

3. Do prekindergarten programs have to comply with child-care licensing standards?

  • If a school district contracts with a private entity for the operation of the district’s prekindergarten program, the program must at a minimum comply with the applicable child-care licensing standards adopted by the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services under Section 42.042, Human Resources Code.
  • TEC §29.1532(b)

4. When was the law for prekindergarten education enacted?

  • Among the reforms generated by the 68th Texas Legislature in 1983 was the emerging recognition of the importance of early childhood education for certain high-risk kindergarten students. During a special session in the summer of 1984, legislators passed House Bill 72. This bill mandated prekindergarten education for high-risk 4-year-olds in Texas public schools. The law for prekindergarten education, enacted in May 1985 became effective with the 1985-86 school year.

5. What is the distinction between Prekindergarten (PK), Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD), and Early Education (EE)?

  • Prekindergarten (PK) is a grade level for children ages three and four. This includes students in a state-funded prekindergarten program or a locally-funded prekindergarten program. Preschool Program for Children with Disabilities (PPCD) Special education services for children with disabilities aged 3 through 5. These students may have any disability recognized under IDEA-B in Texas including non-categorical early childhood (see definition). Developmental delay is not a recognized disability for children over age 3 in Texas. A student over age 3 with a developmental delay is subject to the 2 hours of instruction per day rule for membership. Early Education (EE) is a grade level for students between the ages of zero and five who have not been placed in prekindergarten or kindergarten. This includes students receiving special education services who do not meet the two hours of instruction per day requirement for membership and students in Head Start programs who do not meet the requirements for state funds. This also includes students served by PPCD teachers in a licensed child care facility working in a collaborative partnership with a school district.
  • Citation: SAAH, Section 13, Glossary

6. What is the distinction between Texas Education Code (TEC), Texas Administrative Code (TAC), and Student Attendance Accounting Handbook (SAAH)?

  • The Texas Education Code (TEC) contains the statutes governing public education in Texas. The Texas Administrative Code (TAC) includes rules adopted by the State Board of Education or the commissioner of education under authority granted by state law. The Student Attendance Accounting Handbook (SAAH) provides districts with the Foundation School Program (FSP) eligibility requirements of all students and the minimum requirements of all student attendance accounting systems.
  • SAAH, Section 13, Glossary

7. What are the requirements for starting a prekindergarten program and/or child care facility that’s not associated with a school district or open-enrollment charter school?

If you are starting a private school, please visit the Texas Private School Accreditation Commission (TEPSAC) website. TEPSAC provides a link with guidance for starting a private school in Texas.

Programs that are not associated with an school district, open-enrollment charter school or a private school must be registered through the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS), Child Care Licensing division. Please see http://www.dfps.state.tx.us/Child_Care/, for further information on the becoming a licensed child care provider.

8. May State Compensatory (52% direct cost) Education (SCE) fund prekindergarten?

Districts reporting Pre-K programs receive Foundation School Program (FSP) funding for half day of Pre-K through the regular program. SCE funds may only be used to supplement this regular education program . This means SCE funds may only be used to extend Pre-K half-day to full-day for the same students who meet the state and/or local eligibility criteria for at risk of dropping out of school. Costs cannot be charged to the SCE allotment for providing services to ineligible Pre-K students.

9. May SCE (52% direct cost)funds be used to fund a prekindergarten program for students who do not meet the at-risk criteria?

No. SCE funds may only be used for costs of programs and/or services that are supplemental to the regular education program that are designed for students who meet the state and/or local eligibility criteria. Refer to question 47 for additional guidance on "local" criteria.

10. Does TEA have any resources on Foster Care?

Yes. Foster Care & Student Success page maintains resources and information for school district liaisons, educators, students, and others interested in supporting the educational success of students in foster care.

Texas Foster Care & Student Success Resource Guide

Contacts

Department of Federal and State Education Policy
512-936-6060

Program Contact:
Howard Morrison, howard.morrison@tea.state.tx.us

 

 

Page last modified on 10/16/2013 02:41:41 PM.