PreK4Ward, a kindergarten preparation program offered by United Way of South Mississippi, will begin accepting applications for the 2020-2021 school year on Feb. 1.

An information session for interested parents is scheduled for 5 p.m. on Jan. 28 in the Regions Room of the Knight Nonprofit Center on Seaway Road in Gulfport.

The application is available online at www.unitedwaysm.org/prek. To be eligible, students must live in the Harrison County or Gulfport school districts and be 4 years of age by September 1, 2020.

Students are admitted on a first-come, first-serve basis by location. The program emphasizes early literacy and utilizes a comprehensive curriculum to prepare 4-year-old students for kindergarten.

Parents pay only a $250 registration fee; the remaining costs, including tuition and program costs, are covered by grants.

In the 2019-2020 school year, 140 students were enrolled in the program across seven classrooms. Each classroom has 20 students, a lead teacher and an assistant teacher.

For more information on PreK4Ward, call (228) 896-2213 or email education@unitedwaysm.org.

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