TUCSON (KVOA) – The Pima County Board of Directors has approved funding for its Pima Preschool Education Program (PEEP).
It will provide funding to local school districts and preschool service providers to provide scholarships to eligible families with young children.
These scholarships will cover the registration fees of families who would not be able to afford a daycare otherwise. Sometimes it can go up to $ 1,000 per child.
For preschool providers, the county has allocated funds through an organization called First Things First, which also helps provide scholarships to students.
The Sandbox, a preschool service provider, already has 23 scholarships under this program and now has 30 in total.
This has helped them create a diverse environment for their students.
“It just opens the doors for these families,” said Maria Olmedo, co-director of The Sandbox. “We are a great base for educating children, it’s just giving them this opportunity.”
For parents who otherwise could not afford this service, the scholarship is everything.
“If there was no scholarship, I couldn’t provide that kind of money for a nursery school,” said Marina Amans, whose daughter is in school.
County supervisor Adelita Grijalva said these extra county-wide scholarships are necessary for young people to excel.
“Giving families the opportunity to enroll their child in a quality program will just give them a foundation to build on when they enter kindergarten,” Grijalva said.
Not only does the funding help these families and young children, but also the teachers and staff who work to make this the best possible experience for children.
“This allows us to fund, provide tools to continue education and provide families with quality education for their children,” said Jennifer Blagg, Co-Director of The Sandbox.
Amans’ daughter is the second child she has put in the sandbox, claiming that the work they do here has contributed immensely to their development.
“They were so good at learning and being able to be social and just have an imagination,” Amans said.
To find out if your school district or preschool service providers offer these scholarships, click here.