Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) – Providers
As an early childhood teacher, you play a valuable role in educating young children. In fact, the work you do each day increases a child’s chances of succeeding in school and in life. They are more likely to graduate from high school, finish college and earn more as adults. That is why we need your participation in Florida’s VPK program.
Licensed, private early childhood educators, directors and family child care homes are eligible if they are accredited by a member of the National Council for Private School Accreditation, currently hold a Gold Seal Quality Care designation, or can demonstrate their ability to meet the VPK requirements. Public school districts must be approved by the state.
Standards used in VPK Education Programs
Standards and benchmarks reflect the knowledge and skills that a child on a developmental progression should know and be able to do at the end of an age-related timeframe. In 2017, the Office of Early Learning convened a group of national and state early learning content experts to review current standards and recommend revisions to ensure that standards are rich, interactive and lead to better preparation for children based on current research to support high-quality standards. The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards – Birth to Kindergarten (2017) were adopted by the State Board of Education in December, 2017.
The revised standards address eight early learning and developmental domains reflecting a child’s expected age-appropriate progress – physical development, approaches to learning, social and emotional development, language and literacy, mathematical thinking, scientific inquiry, social studies and creative expression through the arts.
To ensure all teachers of four-year-olds effectively utilize appropriate Early Learning Standards, training has been developed. This training is based on the most current early childhood research and is appropriate for all instructors and directors of programs serving four-year-olds. The training is titled “Implementing the Florida Standards in Preschool Classrooms: 3 Years Old to Kindergarten (VFSP)”. Training is listed on the DCF website and registration must occur there. The training is available both face-to-face and on-line.
Download a copy of The Florida Early Learning and Developmental Standards for Four-Year-Olds (2017) and print them. The Standards are NOT distributed at the trainings.
Do You Want to Become A VPK Provider?
The VPK Provider Reference Guide gives needed information for being a VPK provider.
Provider Application Process
If you are interested in being a VPK Provider in Southwest Florida, please contact Bernadette Russello at the Early Learning Coalition of SWFL (239) 935-6151 or contact one of the Early Childhood Specialists:
- Kristi Biffar: (239) 935-6177
- Sherry Shupp: (239) 935-6180
- Cheryl Carpenter: (239) 935-6178
- Janelle Almonte: (239) 935-6132
- Rebecca McKellar: (239) 935-6133
- Sarah Bedard: (239) 935-6198