Pre-K In the News

Durham PreK Provides Hope to Early Childhood Education in North Carolina


In this article about the challenges facing the child care sector in North Carolina, Durham PreK serves as a glimmer of hope. Linda Chappel, Senior Vice President of Child Care Services Association, and County Commissioner Wendy Jacobs, discuss the importance of Durham County's local investment in ensuring young learners are not left behind due to unaffordable care.

Durham PreK provides high-quality universal preschool services to four-year-olds by supporting centers and directors throughout the county. Thanks to the support of the community and local elected officials, the program, which began in 2018, continues on a trajectory of expansion despite the many difficulties facing the broader early childhood ecosystem in North Carolina.

One Durham PreK director, Michele Miller-Cox of First Presbyterian Day School, believes “Child care plays a huge role in the business success of this state.” Read more to learn about how Durham PreK supports Durham families and the workforce at large while enriching and nurturing the lives of children across the community.

Durham County proposed budget has increased focus on pre-K education


"The proposed budget from the Durham County Manager funds more slots and classrooms for 4-year-olds. Parents and teachers within Durham Public Schools agree on the importance of early childhood education."

In Touch with Durham County for March 2021


"In this episode, host Deborah Craig-Ray, General Manager of Strategic Planning and Innovation, welcomes Dr. Linda Chappel, Senior Vice President, Triangle Area Child Care Resoures & Referral Services and Donna Rewalt, Director of Durham County Cooperative Extension. In segment one, Chappel will discuss all things Durham Pre-K! This exciting initiative supported by Durham County Government provides publicly funded preschool services to our community. She'll talk about he enrollment period for the 2021-2022 school year and challenges COVID-19 has presented over the last year."

Study Shows that Pennsylvania Children Who Attend Pre-K Counts Programs Outperform Kids Who Don’t Have Access


New study from Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts. "'Pre-k in PA is working! The bottom line of this report is that children fortunate enough to access pre-k through Pennsylvania’s Pre-K Counts program are succeeding in kindergarten. In language and math skills, the study showed that these kids outperformed their kindergarten peers who did not enjoy access to this once-in-a-lifetime early learning experience – an advantage that equated to four to five months of learning gains, which is a substantial difference in development at that age. These outcomes are significant, because language and math skills have been shown to be the school readiness skills that most strongly predict later academic achievement.'"


Exciting news for universal pre-K from Oregon! "On Election Day, Multnomah County, which includes Portland, Ore., passed one of the most progressive universal preschool policies in the nation."

INDY Week: Candidate Questionnaire: Heidi Carter, Durham County Commissioner


"I believe that if our community is to achieve prosperity for all, we must invest in pre-K for all.  Durham County is currently funding high quality Durham PreK for low income four-year-olds, and I support the continued expansion of this program.  If the state refuses to take on this responsibility, then we must do so at the local government level in Durham."

CBS 17 - Durham PreK accepting online applications for 2020-2021 school year


"The goal is to make applying easier for families during the COVID-19 pandemic."

The News & Observer - Durham voters elect county’s 1st all-female board and 1st Muslim woman commissioner


"'I’m really grateful for the people (to) whom I am accountable for believing in my work,' she said. Both she and Jacobs said they’re excited to work on expanding Universal Pre-K in Durham, to address problems caused by the County’s high child poverty rates."

Durham Magazine - December 2019/January 2020 - Noted, page 23


"Child Care Services Association launched a new website for Durham PreK, the public preschool for 4-year-olds run by the Durham County government. The site aims to inform the Durham community about Durham PreK enrollment, which is open universally to all children in Durham County and other local resources."

Durham County Board of Commissioners - Interview with Commissioner Heidi Carter


"I am excited that this very important effort that began because members of the community were asking for it. I am proud that our three elected governmental bodies [school board, city council and county commission] came together around it and commissioned a volunteer task force to get input and guidance to make this program a reality. It is gratifying to see the process from the beginning to where we are now—and where we are going in the future. I like our mixed model of delivery that provides so much potential for Durham. A community-based solution like we have in Durham will assure our success."

EducationNC - Universal pre-K means more gains for all children, a study finds. What does that mean for North Carolina?


"Universal public pre-K programs — programs with no requirement other than age — make a bigger difference in students’ academic success than programs that target specific children with high needs, a Dartmouth College study has found."

The News & Observer, The Herald Sun - Durham's pre-k offers every child a better chance


"We can address underlying historic racial inequities and resulting wealth gaps with a systems change approach. Universal access to high quality pre-k for every four year old will help create equitable access to lifelong learning, success and shared prosperity in Durham."

CBS 17 - Durham PreK’s new website will help families get all the information they need about the program


"DURHAM, N.C. (WNCN) — Durham PreK has a new website that will help Durham County families get all the information they need about the county’s program.

The website will help families get information about enrollment, find other local resources, as well as learn about the county’s commitment to both high-quality and equitable education for all young kids in the county, according to a press release."

Child Care Services Association - Got a 4 year old? Durham PreK Wants You!


"This past week, Durham PreK’s new website launched as a place for Durham County families to find information about enrolling 4-year-old children in Durham PreK, to find other local resources related to early childhood development and to learn about Durham’s commitment to equitable, high-quality education for all young children."

Ed NC Early Bird - Let's Talk about Durham PreK


Durham PreK was featured Ed NC Early Bird - a newsletter that highlights issues affecting children in North Carolina and state policy and programs that address those issues.

Què Pasa - Raleigh | Durham - Nuevo sitio web con información de prekínder en el condado Durham


Durham PreK's website launch was featured on the Què Pasa - Raleigh | Durham media network. Què Pasa provides local news in Spanish and reaches 85% of North Carolina's Spanish-speaking families.

WRAL Go Ask Mom - Spots remain for Durham PreK programs


"With funding from the Durham County Government, Durham PreK offers the opportunity for universal services for all four-year-olds in Durham County through programs such as NC PreK, Durham Public Schools and Head Start, according to a press release."

Durham County News - Five Pre-K Classrooms Selected in Durham PreK Expansion


"Applications to join the program this year were competitive with nineteen classrooms applying. Each candidate completed a written application that was scored by a review team of early education professionals who are not involved with Durham PreK. From those applications nine potential classrooms were chosen for an in-person visit and assessment."

The Herald Sun - Letters: Exciting time for child care in Durham County


"Applications to join the program this year were competitive with nineteen classrooms applying. Each candidate completed a written application that was scored by a review team of early education professionals who are not involved with Durham PreK. From those applications nine potential classrooms were chosen for an in-person visit and assessment."