Colorado’s free preschool applications are closing soon - here is how to apply

Inna D
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A new Colorado program is allowing for 15 hours of free preschool in the 2023-2024 school year.

The cutoff date for the first round of applications are closing soon (February 14th). Applicants will be able to find their match by March 17th.

Am I eligible?

According to the Universal Preschool Colorado program (UPK), families in Colorado can receive at least 15 hours per week of free, voluntary preschool for 4 year olds through the Universal Preschool (UPK) Colorado program. 3 year olds with qualifying factors are eligible for 10 free hours per week.

From Chalkbeat Colorado, there are three groups of children who qualify: 4-year-olds, some 3-year-olds who need extra help, and a small number of 5-year-olds who are too young for kindergarten.

The new preschool program is designed for children in the year before they go to kindergarten — children who turn 4 before the state’s Oct. 1 cutoff date. The state will pay for 15 hours a week of preschool for these students at no cost to parents. Some preschool providers may offer only 10 hours a week — for example, a school district that offers K-12 classes only four days a week. 

Some 4-year-olds will get 30 hours of free preschool a week, including those from lower-income families, who speak a language besides English at home, are homeless, in foster care, or have disabilities. 

The new preschool program will also cover 10 hours a week of preschool for 3-year-olds in these same groups. 

What are the qualifying factors?

Families with certain qualifying factors are eligible for more hours stacked on top of the half-day (up to 15 hours) available to every child in the year before they are eligible for kindergarten. 

This includes:

  • Household Income
  • IEP
  • Housing status
  • Dual language learner
  • Foster/Kinship care

You will need to upload documents to show proof of Household Income.

Where can I apply?

You can apply online at

Reminder- there will be an additional application window in the future, so be on the lookout in case you miss it!

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