Enrollment

To complete an application, call DPfC at 919-403-6960 to speak to the Pre-K Coordinator and schedule an application appointment with a counselor (Spanish bilingual counselors available). Appointments will be at the Jim and Carolyn Hunt Child Care Resource Center, 1201 S. Briggs Avenue, Durham, NC 27703. You may also come in for a walk-in appointment during regular business hours Monday through Friday.

 

For any other information, please view our FAQs or contact us.

View the Universal Preschool Application Flyer here.

 

Would you like for one of our Spanish bilingual preschool application counselors to contact you to set up an application appointment? Please complete our electronic interest form below, and one of our counselors will contact you soon!

Who is eligible to apply for preschool in Durham?

Any family living in Durham County with a child who will be 4 by August 31 of the preschool year is eligible to apply. Eligibility for preschool services in Durham is not limited by income.

Is there any cost to my family for preschool participation?

For most families, preschool services will be free. Families with incomes above 300% of the current year's Federal Poverty Level will contribute parent fees based on income and family size. To determine whether and what your parent fee might be, click here to read more about the sliding scale.

Where do I sign up?

You can download the Universal Preschool Application here and get more information by calling DPfC at 919-403-6960. You can also call to set up an application appointment at the Jim and Carolyn Hunt Child Care Resource Center, 1201 S. Briggs Ave. Durham, NC 27703.

Click here to download our preschool flyer.

What is the preschool calendar and schedule?

All preschool classrooms in Durham follow Durham Public Schools' traditional calendar. Similarly, the preschool day is 6.5 hours, just as the public school day.

What if I need more than 6.5 hours of care each day?

Care outside the preschool day is called Wrap Around care. Wrap Around Care is a separate service from preschool and is neither guaranteed at every facility nor free. Individual preschool providers will determine whether they have the staffing to host Wrap Around Care and for what hours. Families should ask the facility where they are placed whether Wrap Around Care is an option and, if so, make Wrap Around Care arrangements with that facility. Vouchers and Scholarships can sometimes help to cover Wrap Around Care costs for qualifying families, but eligibility for these services is not guaranteed or universally applicable to all types of preschool.

When I submit a Universal Preschool application, where will my child be placed?

Preschool classrooms in Durham are supported by a mix of programs, including NC Pre-K, Head Start, Durham Public Schools, and Durham PreK. Participating preschool classrooms may be in a public school setting, a Head Start facility, or at a private child care facility that meets certain quality standards. Some facilities will have seats from only one of these programs, others will have a mix of seats. Every child with a Universal Preschool application will receive a developmental screening. The results of the screening, general program eligibility, parent preference, and distance from home are all taken into consideration on during the placement process.

What do I need to bring to my application appointment?

All families will need to submit the child’s birth certificate and immunization records, proof of current address (current lease, mortgage statement or utility bill) and proof of one month’s income (one month’s paystubs or letter from employer if paystubs are not available).

The following documents are also considered part of your monthly income, and you will need to provide documentation of any or all that apply to your family:

  • Child support (for any child in your household)
  • Pension
  • SSA/SSI
  • Disability
  • Alimony payments
  • Commissioned Sales
  • Scholarships or grants
  • Proof of parent enrollment in school
  • Financial assistance
  • W-2 (self-employed)

We understand not every family will have access to all of these documents. If you,

  • are residing with a family member
  • do not currently have an income
  • are self-employed and paid in cash

our application counselors will help you fill out alternate forms needed to complete the application.

Some families may be asked to provide additional information. Examples include:

  • Military families – will need to provide one or all of the following documents, if applicable:
    • Valid military I.D.
    • Separation forms
    • Active Duty income paystubs
    • Proof of Deployment (current or future)
  • Children with additional services – will need to provide one or both of the following documents, if applicable:
    • Documentation of a chronic health condition
    • Copy of Private Service Plan

Sliding Scale

For most families, preschool services will be free. Families with incomes above 300% of the current year's Federal Poverty Level will contribute parent fees based on income and family size. To determine whether and what your parent fee might be, follow the steps below.

  1. Find your family size in the chart below and see if your gross annual income (income before taxes) falls into one of the ranges shown.
  2. Divide your gross annual income (income before taxes) by 12 to determine monthly income.
  3. Multiply by 4% or 7% depending on which applies to your income range to determine your monthly parent fee.

A family of any size with a gross annual income over $214,287 is still eligible, but will be assigned a parent fee of $1,250, which matches the maximum monthly cost of each Durham PreK spot. Please note that Federal Poverty Level changes annually and can be referenced here.

 

wdt_ID Family Size < 300% FPL >300% - 350 % FPL > 350% - Cap of Fees
1 1 $0 - $37,470 $37,471 - $43,715 $43,716 - $214,287
2 2 $0 - $50,730 $50, 731 - $59,185 $59,186 - $214,287
3 3 $0 - $63,990 $63,991 - $74,655 $74,656 - $214,287
4 4 $0 - $77,250 $77,251 - $90,125 $90, 126 - $214,287
6 5 $0 - $90,510 $90,511 - $105,595 $105,596 - $214,287
8 6 $0 - $103,770 $103,771 - $121,065 $121,066 - $214,28
9 7 $0 - $117,030 $117,031 - $136,535 $136,536 - $214,287
10 No Parent Fee 4% Parent Fee 7% Parent Fee

The 2020-2022 NC Pre-K and Durham PreK RFA is now open for child care centers in Durham County! Click here for the application.