Submissions accepted by appointment for Sept. 1
DEARBORN — Dearborn Public Schools will make applications available for this year’s Great Start Readiness Program preschool programs offered throughout the district from 10 a.m to noon Aug. 26.
Applications will be available for pickup outside the office doors at the following locations:
• Cotter Early Childhood Center, 13020 Osborn.
• Salina Elementary, 2700 Ferney.
• Long Elementary, 3100 Westwood.
• McCollough-Unis, 7801 Maple.
• Whitmore Bolles, 21501 Whitmore.
• McDonald Elementary, 10151 Diversey.
• Becker Elementary, 10821 Henson.
Masks are required when picking up applications.
When picking up an application, the family will schedule an appointment to return paperwork on Sept. 1.
If families cannot make it to one of the locations to pick up an application or if there currently is an application on file and an appointment is needed, contact Cotter Early Childhood Center at 313-827-6150 before Sept. 1.
GSRP will be starting virtually this school year and will follow the direction of DPS for returning to face-to-face instruction. Teachers will be working with accepted families remotely and offering some face-to-face assistance for families able to visit their classroom.
If families have already completed the application process and received an acceptance letter, a preschool teacher will contact the family during the first week in September.
GSRP is a state-sponsored program for families who qualify based on income. The program services low-income families who are below 250 percent of the federal poverty guidelines, Early Childhood Coordinator Amy Modica said.
To be enrolled, children must turn 4 years old before Dec. 1, 2020. Priority is given to students who have birthdays before Sept. 1 because those students will qualify to start kindergarten next year, but the program will take students with birthdays between Sept. 1 and Dec. 1, if space is available.
To apply, students must live with a parent or legal guardian within the school district.
Dearborn has 480 slots for GSRP students at 12 locations, including Cotter School, Becker, Long, McCollough, Henry Ford, McDonald, Oakman, River Oaks, Salina, Whitmore-Bolles and William Ford elementary schools, and Salina Intermediate.
GSRP classes are generally 16 students with two adults, including a certified early childhood specialist. Classes meet for a full school day from Monday through Thursday. Times vary slightly by building, but are similar to the elementary school schedule.
The program meets detailed state requirements using the Highscope Curriculum for how and what students learn.
“We focus on kindergarten readiness,” Modica said. “Our emphasis is on student social (and) emotional readiness for school.”
In addition to learning academics like letters and colors, GSRP students learn how to get along with other children, how to take care of themselves, and other skills they will need to thrive in kindergarten.
Families were notified in July if their child was accepted to the program or put on a waiting list. Those with birthdays from Sept. 1 to Dec. 1 will not find out until the beginning of September if they are accepted to the program.
“We encourage interested families to call and learn more and to fill out an application,” Modica said.