The South Brunswick School District is getting a full-day preschool, and the state is providing $2 million to the district to implement the program.
Superintendent Scott Feder announced the district is receiving state funding for the full-day preschool program in a letter to the school community in November.
The announcement comes after school officials pushed the state to review aid after South Brunswick School District learned in September that they were not among the 27 school districts that Governor Phil Murphy and the New Jersey Department of Education (NJDOE ) named the recipients of the first portion of $40 million — more than $26 million — in grants earmarked in the 2023 budget for preschool expansion.
“At that time, we were denied this state program, but we continued to insist and appeal the decision. A few days ago we received the excellent news that we are now receiving funds to open in 2023,” Feder wrote in his letter.
The superintendent said that “while receiving $2 million in funding for the full-day preschool program is amazing news, there is still much work to be done to build the foundation of the program.”
“As we build the program, we hope that in a few years, all of our three- and four-year-olds will have full access to free, full-day preschool,” Feder said in the letter.
“Please know that we will be providing the community with regular updates on the progress of the program. In the coming days and weeks, we will send more information about registration and how it will all work.”
Gov. Phil Murphy and the NJDOE’s announcement that 27 school districts will receive the first tranche of grants has ensured that nearly 2,150 additional three- and four-year-olds will have access to preschool by increasing New Jersey’s preschool capacity to nearly 70,000 , according to the governor.
Funding has also allowed districts to expand existing preschool programs or create new preschool programs. The 27 districts that received funding started full-day preschool programs in early October.
School districts that received the first portion of the funding included Howell School District ($2.29 million), West Long Branch School District ($249,426) and Springfield School District ($1.21 million).
Funding for the remainder of fiscal year 2023 will be provided at a later date, according to the governor’s office.
Over the summer, the NJDOE invited school districts to apply for a share of $40 million in state funding.
For students who meet income eligibility standards, according to the governor’s office.