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State of the City 2020: Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza Announce Accelerated Expansion of 3-K for All

February 5, 2020

City will now serve 26,000 three-year-olds across all five boroughs in 2020-21 school year

NEW YORK—As part of the Mayor’s 2020 State of the City address, Mayor de Blasio and Schools Chancellor Richard A. Carranza are announcing that 3-K is expanding to Districts 1 (Chinatown, East Village, Lower East Side) and 14 (Greenpoint, Williamsburg) in the Fall, bringing the total number of Districts to 16, spanning every borough across the City. In the Fall of 2020, 3-K will also expand to Districts 12 (Central Bronx) and 29 (Cambria Heights, Hollis, Laurelton, Queens Village, Springfield Gardens, St. Albans) as announced in 2018. 3-K and Pre-K applications open today.

Through this expansion, 3-K for All will serve 26,000 children citywide for the 2020-21 school year. This includes all 3-year-old children served citywide in Head Start and Child Care programs, which transferred from ACS to management by the DOE this summer to create a single early childhood system for families.

"Every family should be able to give their child the world, and expanding 3-K will help us set even more of our students on the path to success,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “3-K and Pre-K for All are unlocking the potential of every child and creating more opportunity for families.” 

"I'm so excited to make 3-K bigger and better than ever this fall, serving a total of 16 districts and up to 26,000 three year olds. We know that the City's youngest learners and their families benefit tremendously from getting in the classroom earlier, and I thank Mayor de Blasio for his leadership and support in growing early childhood education each year,” said Chancellor Richard A. Carranza.

3-K for All is the nation’s most ambitious effort to provide universal, free, full-day, high-quality early childhood education for every three-year-old child, and builds on the success of Pre-K for All. Research has found every dollar invested in high-quality early education saves taxpayers as much as $13 in the long-term.

These districts were selected based on need and space availability, and builds on the Mayor’s commitment to early childhood education. Each year, the City has outpaced its planned growth—originally, 3-K was expanding to only 8 districts by Fall 2020.

With this increased commitment, the full schedule for 3-K expansion is: 

  • 2017-18: District 7 (South Bronx) and District 23 (Brownsville)
  • 2018-19: District 4 (East Harlem), District 5 (Harlem), District 16 (Bedford-Stuyvesant), and District 27 (Broad Channel, Howard Beach, Ozone Park, Rockaways)
  • 2019-20: District 6 (Washington Heights and Inwood), District 8 (Country Club, Pelham Bay, Throgs Neck, Castle Hill, Soundview, Hunts Point), District 9 (Grand Concourse, Highbridge, Morrisania), District 19 (East New York), District 31 (Staten Island), and District 32 (Bushwick)
  • 2020-21: District 1 (Chinatown, East Village, Lower East Side), District 12 (Central Bronx), District 14 (Greenpoint, Williamsburg), and District 29 (Cambria Heights, Hollis, Laurelton, Queens Village, Springfield Gardens, St. Albans)

The application for 3-K opens today, Wednesday February 5, and will remain open until Friday, April 24. Families in these new districts will be notified as new program options are added to the application, and they will be able to update their application at any time before submitting. Families can find programs and apply online at MySchools.nyc. Families can also apply over the phone at 718-935-2009, or in person at a Family Welcome Center. The online application is available in ten languages, and families can submit an application over the phone or in person in over 200 languages. All New York City families with children born in 2016 can apply for pre-K, and all families with children born in 2017 can apply for 3-K in the 2020-21 school year.

3-K and pre-K enrollment specialists – experts on sites across each neighborhood – will also be available to help families throughout the process as they find a program that best fits their child’s needs. 

Pre-K for All and 3-K for All are part of the Mayor and Chancellor’s Equity and Excellence for All agenda, which is building a pathway to success in college and careers for all students. 3-K for All and Pre-K for All are strengthening foundational skills and instruction earlier; Universal Literacy is working towards ensuring every student is reading on grade level by the end of 2nd grade; and Algebra for All is improving elementary- and middle-school math instruction and ensuring that all 8th graders have access to algebra. Equity and Excellence for All is also offering students more challenging, hands-on, college and career-aligned coursework – Computer Science for All brings 21st-century computer science instruction to every school, and AP for All is giving all high school students access to at least five Advanced Placement courses. Along the way, they are giving students and families additional support through College Access for All, Single Shepherd, and investment in Community Schools. Efforts to create more diverse and inclusive classrooms, outlined in the 2017 New York City school diversity plan and through diversity pilots taking root in eight districts, are central to this pathway.

“The expansion of 3-K into Manhattan District 1 is great news for kids and parents in Chinatown, the East Village and the Lower East Side. Studies show early childhood education has lifelong benefits, and is correlated with completing college and successful adulthood. I’m grateful to Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza for their work expanding early childhood education in Manhattan and across all five boroughs,” said Senator Brad Hoylman.

“New Yorkers can be proud of the fact that we are home to one of the most ambitious childcare initiatives in the nation. Mayor de Blasio’s 3-K for All program has provided thousands of working families free, universal, quality childcare. Thanks to the recently announced expansion of the program, families in School District 14 will now be eligible to apply for the program, helping to offset financial burden and ensuring our youngest minds are nurtured. I look forward to the continued expansion of 3-K for All,” said Council Member Antonio Reyonoso.

“I want to thank Mayor de Blasio and Chancellor Carranza for expanding 3-K for All to School District 1 and giving thousands of new children throughout New York City access to free, high-quality early childhood education. Early childhood education sets the stage for the rest of a child’s development, and no family should have to choose between these vital programs and putting food on their table. This 3-K expansion will build upon the City’s historic pre-K program and ensure that our early childhood education is one of the best and most equitable in the nation,” said Council Member Carlina Rivera.

“I am thrilled that universal 3-K will be a possibility for families in Chinatown and the Lower East Side. Early childhood education creates a path for success – not just for the child, but for the entire family. I thank Mayor De Blasio and Chancellor Carranza for their continued investment to expand equity for underserved neighborhoods,” said Council Member Margaret Chin.


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