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Chancellor Carranza Announces Record High Percentage Of Families Receiving Top Choice Pre-K Offer

  • Posted: Wed May 13, 2020

90 percent of families receive offer to one of their top three choices; 77 percent receive first choice offer

NEW YORK – Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza today announced a record 77 percent of families received an offer to their top choice free, full-day, high-quality pre-K program, up from 75 percent in 2019. A record 90 percent of families received an offer to one of their top three choices, up from 88 percent in 2019. All 61,789 families who applied by the March 29 deadline started to receive Pre-K for All offers for their child today. 

“At this difficult time in our City’s history, I want to take a moment to congratulate almost 62,000 families who are receiving their pre-K offer letters today,” said Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza. “Pre-K for All is a transformative opportunity for tens of thousands of families across the City. There is a seat for every child born in 2016, so if you haven’t done so yet, please go online to or call 718-935-2009 and find one today!”

“Pre-K for All remains a bedrock of this City, and I’m so grateful to our dedicated teachers, staff, and providers who continue to make free, full-day, high-quality pre-K a reality,” said Josh Wallack, Deputy Chancellor of Early Education and Student Enrollment. “Congratulations 

to all of the families receiving their offer letters today, and I encourage all families who are still interested in participating to visit or call 718-935-2009.”

The DOE is committed to creating greater diversity in pre-K classrooms and, this year, the Diversity in Admissions pilot expanded to include 38 pre-K programs, including every district program in District 1. For the third year, NYC Early Education Centers – the community-based organizations that partner with the DOE to provide early childhood services – are also participating. Programs with Diversity in Admissions pilots give priority in their admissions to children who qualify for free or reduced-price lunch (FRL), are Emergent Multilingual Learners (EMLLs), are Students in Temporary Housing (STH), who reside in public housing, and/or have been in the child welfare system or impacted by incarceration. Seven of the 16 schools in District 1 are within their target range for offers, and 19 of the 22 programs outside District 1 met or nearly met their targets, when applicable. 

Due to the COVID-19 public health crisis, we extended the pre-K application deadline from March 16 to March 29. Every New York City family with a child born in 2016 is eligible to begin Pre-K for All this fall, and families can still find a seat. There is a seat available for every family in the City. Families who missed the deadline are able to add themselves to pre-K program waitlists, and could begin to receive waitlist offers today. Families who need additional assistance can visit or call 718-935-2009.

This year the Mayor and Chancellor celebrated the results of two different national program assessment tools that showed the vast majority of pre-K programs are demonstrating predictors of positive outcomes, meaning children are more likely to demonstrate reading, math, language, and social skills, such as being independent, understanding shapes, and using expanded vocabulary. On the ECERS-R, 95 percent of evaluated City programs met or exceeded the threshold that predicts positive outcomes, a 7 percentage point increase from when programs were evaluated in 2016-17. On CLASS, 99.8 percent of sites with scores met at least one of three thresholds for positive student outcomes, representing a 0.8 percentage point increase from 2016-17. 

Pre-K for All is having a measurable impact on academic performance and closing the achievement gap. For the first time last school year, third graders who had participated in the City’s Pre-K for All program took State tests. According to 2019 State test scores, the White-Black and White-Hispanic achievement gaps were narrower for students who attended Pre-K for All when compared to those did not. Additionally, third grade students who attended Pre-K for All outperformed students who did not, demonstrating the long-term benefits of the program.

Together, the Equity and Excellence for All initiatives are building a pathway to success in college and careers for all students. Our schools are starting earlier – free, full-day, high-quality education for three-year-olds and four-year-olds through 3-K for All and Pre-K for All. They are strengthening foundational skills and instruction earlier – Universal Literacy so that every student is reading on grade level by the end of 2nd grade; and Algebra for All to improve elementary- and middle-school math instruction and ensure that all 8th graders have access to algebra. They are offering students more challenging, hands-on, college and career-aligned coursework – Computer Science for All brings 21st-century computer science instruction to every school, and AP for All will give all high school students access to at least five Advanced Placement courses. Along the way, they are giving students and families additional support through College Access for All, Single Shepherd, and investment in Community Schools. Efforts to create more diverse and inclusive classrooms, including Equity & Excellence for All: Diversity in New York City Public Schools, are central to this pathway.




Contact:  Chancellor’s Press Office (212) 374-5141