By Lillian Bowe
PNT staff writer
Brown Early Childhood Center is applying for a grant from the New Mexico Children, Youth and Families Department that would create a public preschool for 4-year-olds.
Rebecca Flen, the principal of Brown, has been writing the grant since February.
“Brown has a Developmentally Delayed Pre-school for 2-, 3- and 4-year-olds and the children have to go through our child find before they are accepted into the program. Not every child is accepted, so this program will reach a lot more students,” Flen said.
The school will be asking for 220 slots as the grant will be funded per student. Flen said six classrooms will be used for the Pre-K program with six teachers, with two half day sessions four days a week.
It will be inclusive as children in the Developmentally Delayed program will learn with the students enrolled in the new program.
Flen said they have wanted to apply for this program for a few years, but only Title I schools are eligible.
This year Brown become a Title I school — schools with high numbers or high percentages of children from low-income families.
Flen said there is a chance the grant will not be rewarded or they might not be rewarded the amount of seats they applied for. The grant deadline is March 24 and the school will not know until April if they won the grant.
“There has to be a lot of family participation if the grant is rewarded, which is a good opportunity for partnership between the parents and the school,” Flen said.
All the teachers are required to have a Early Childhood Development associates degree.
“The program will allow more students to be exposed early to learning and being at school. They will also establish social interactions with other children their age,” Flen said.
Flen said the earlier a child is exposed to being taught the more success they have later in life.