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Colorado Preschool Program

*This program ended in June 2023.


Students Funded by the Colorado Preschool Program and Preschool Special Education in the 2022-23 School Year

Twenty-eight thousand and fifty two (28,052) students were reported in the Fall Pupil Count.

*7,980 (28.45%) received two part day funded positions for full day (either SPED/CPP, or CPP/CPP, or CPP/ECARE).

*13,360 received half day CPP/ECARE.

*6,712 received half day SPED.

Represented as half day positions, rather than students, this totals 36,032.

2022-2023 Preschool Children Funded in the Year Prior to Kindergarten Entry

In review of the pupil count information from the 2022-23 school year, there were 18,902 children who received state preschool funding in the year prior to kindergarten.

*15,339 received CPP funding.

*957 of the 15,339 received both half day CPP funding and half day funding based on IEP status.

*3,563 in addition to the 15,339 received half day state preschool funding based on IEP status (not CPP funding).

For additional information, please contact Heidi White.


Preschool Students in Student October Pupil Count

Some Data Pipeline data collections have been adjusted due to the implementation of universal preschool. LEAs will report all preschool students receiving services from the LEA (regardless of universal preschool funding status). All preschool students will be indicated with a Public-School Finance Funding Status of ‘86’ or ‘96’ (not eligible for School Finance funds). LEAs will not report any PK students who are not receiving services directly from the LEA. LEAs will not have the ability to use a November 1st Preschool Alternate Count Date. CPP/ECARE funding is no longer applicable effective in the 2023-2024 school year.

For more information regarding the CDE Student Data Collections, please visit the School Auditing Office website.  For more information on the Student October collection, please refer to the 2023 Student October Count Audit Resource Guide (page 62).

The Colorado Preschool Program sunset at the end of the 2022-23 school year, and the new Universal Preschool program being implemented by the Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) started with the 23-24 school year.

Applications for the new Universal Preschool (UPK) program administered by the Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) are now open.  Please visit the UPK application page on the CDEC website for more information.

Universal Preschool Beginning July 1, 2023

The passage of HB22-1295 established the Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) and the Universal Preschool Program. This new statewide preschool program launched July 1, 2023 at which time the Colorado Preschool Program sunset. The Colorado Department of Education will continue to administer preschool special education in accordance with IDEA and ECEA for children ages three through five. Questions about ongoing implementation of IDEA requirements for preschoolers, should be directed to the CDE Early Childhood Special Education staff.  For information about CDEC preschool implementation effective on or after July 1, 2023, contact the CDEC.

History of the Colorado Preschool Program

The Colorado Preschool Program (CPP) was a state-funded early childhood education program administered by the Colorado Department of Education. The General Assembly allocated funding for up to 29,360 children considered to be at-risk for later school failure to attend half- or full-day preschool. CPP was managed by local school districts and their preschool advisory councils. Each participating school district was given a predetermined number of half-day positions to serve eligible children. These positions were used to serve preschoolers in either half- or full-day programs in school district settings, local childcare centers, community preschools or Head Start programs.

Contact the Early Childhood Special Education Team