Laying the Foundation for Learning
VDOE helps prepare all children for kindergarten by supporting birth to five programming, including the Virginia Preschool Initiative and Early Childhood Special Education. Quality early learning experiences are an essential element to preparing children to succeed in kindergarten and beyond. Watch the videos below to learn more.
Early Childhood Education: Key Ingredients
Early Childhood Inclusion in Augusta County
Frequently Asked Questions
- Division of School Readiness, Office of Early Childhood FAQ-This is a Word document. – This document provides information for VPI, ECSE, and other school-based early childhood programs.
- Transition from Part C to Part B FAQ-This is a Word document. – This document provides information on the IDEA Transition from Part C to Part B
- Joint Guidance for Partnering to Provide Child Care during Virtual Learning-This is a Word document., August 4, 2020
- Joint Guidance for Student Placements Reimbursed by the Children’s Services Act-This is a Word document., March 30, 2020 – Provided by the VDOE and the Office of Children’s Services.
- Joint Guidance for Emergency Child Care during Statewide School Closure-This is a Word document., Updated May 19, 2020 – This document from the VDSS and the VDOE outlines options and waivers which different public and private entities and communities should consider in order to provide safe child care alternatives for essential personnel while maintaining stringent health protocols to minimize the risk of additional COVID-19 spread.
- Status as an Essential Business – Child Care Services for Children of Essential Personnel-This is a PDF document. – Information child care providers can use to demonstrate that they are essential and help them deal with local entities.
- Using the CARES Act to Support Child Care in Virginia-This is a Word document., Updated April 15, 2020 – Virginia is committed to supporting child care and ensuring essential personnel can work.
Virginia's Focus on School Readiness
The years before a child enters kindergarten directly impact a child’s ability to thrive in kindergarten and beyond. School Readiness means preparing all children for kindergarten by supporting birth-to-age-five programming, including the Virginia Preschool Initiative and Early Childhood Special Education. Virginia's focus includes key classroom practices such as the use of high-quality curriculum and assessment, teacher-child interactions and individualized professional development. It also includes strengthening family engagement.
The VDOE is preparing for the transition of child care functions from the Department of Social Services (VDSS). As of July 1, 2021, the VDOE will be in charge of child care licensing and the child care subsidy program. This is all part of Virginia's broader effort to unify and strengthen the birth-five landscape in Virginia. Visit Building a Unified Early Childhood System for information and resources related to this transition.
For parents and caregivers of children birth to age five
Begin here to navigate the range of information and resources for children from birth to age five on this website. Resources for Families includes developmental standards and guidelines, preschool programs, special education information and links to a number of early childhood supports including health and social services.
Virginia preschool programs for four-year-olds
Early childhood programs in Virginia public schools provide a foundation for learning and academic success. In addition to information on Preschool Programs and services, this section includes professional development resources for teachers and grant management tools for administrators.
Children with Disabilities
Early childhood special education services for children birth to age five
For children with disabilities, Virginia's public school system offers early childhood services as part of their special education programs. These Early Childhood Special Education services provide children with disabilities the services needed to attain skills that are comparable to their typically developing peers.