POSTED: Thursday, January 24, 2013 - 8:00pm
UPDATED: Thursday, January 24, 2013 - 8:04pm
Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — Parents can apply to put their children public Pre-K programs in East Baton Rouge Parish starting next week, but there are changes to process this year.
Instead of a lottery, students will be matched with schools based on their academic readiness. Each child will be pre-screened before they're matched with a school.
The school district says nearly 200 students enter Pre-K each year without any early learning, and it leaves them at a disadvantage.
The goal of this year's changes is to help those children catch up with their peers.
"When a teacher has half of the students that have been to some kind of Pre-K learning facility and some that have not been anywhere, it's hard for that teacher to really provide for all of them the way that they should be provided for academically," stated EBRPSS Pre-K Director Bobbie Johnson.
Parents need to go to their preferred school next Monday through Friday to pick up an application.
District officials say even if your children have been in an early learning program, there's still a chance you'll be able to your first-choice school.