Early childhood programs in Virginia public schools provide a foundation for learning and academic success. School-readiness activities focus on phonological awareness, vocabulary, number sense and physical, motor and social development.
The Virginia Preschool Initiative distributes state funds to schools and community-based organizations to provide quality preschool programs for at-risk four-year olds unserved by Head Start.
Virginia was one of 13 states that won a four-year federal preschool expansion grant to improve upon the already successful Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI) and expand services to four-year olds and their families in high need communities. The Virginia federal Preschool Development Grant (PDG) is known as VPI+.
School readiness describes the capabilities of children, families, schools and communities that promote student success in kindergarten and beyond. Each component plays an essential role in the development of school readiness.
- Virginia Foundation Blocks for Early Learning: Comprehensive Standards for Four-Year-Olds (PDF)
Virginia's Foundation Blocks – Comprehensive Standards for Four-Year-Olds describes specific indicators for pre-kindergarten children in the content areas of reading and mathematics.
- Preschool Curriculum Review Rubric and Planning Tool (PDF) – The rubric is designed to assist early childhood educators with reviewing curricula and products to determine if they align with the Foundation Blocks for Early Learning.
- Virginia’s Quality Indicators for Responsive Teaching: Creating a High Quality Preschool Learning Environment (PDF) – This checklist aligns with the preschool standards and helps teachers, parents, and administrators focus on creating shared, active, and hands-on opportunities for young children to develop their full potential.
- Resources to Support Teachers of Young English Language Learners
- Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS)
- Center for the Improvement of Early Reading Achievement (CIERA) – The national center for research on early reading, representing a consortium of educators from five universities.
- School Bus Transportation of Pre-School-Aged Children from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.
Currently two data collections are required for early childhood programs. For detailed instructions, see Early Childhood Data Collection
- Virginia Preschool Initiative Fall Verification Report – Due annually in the fall
- Virginia Preschool Initiative Application Requirements – Due annually in the spring