General Guidelines for the ECARE Program:
The Colorado General Assembly approved funding for a major expansion of the Colorado Preschool Program. 5000 additional Early Childhood At-Risk Enhancement (ECARE) slots were authorized under the Public School Finance Act bringing the total number of children who can be served through CPP to 28,360. We are thrilled to know that CPP will be able to make a lasting difference in the lives of these children and their families.
- ECARE slots must be used to serve CPP eligible preschool and kindergarten children.
- Three-year-olds with three eligibility factors may be served with ECARE slots.
- Four-year-olds and kindergarteners with at least one eligibility factor may be served with ECARE slots.
- Eligible preschoolers may be served in half-day programs using one .5 FTE ECARE slot per child OR two .5 FTE ECARE slots may be combined to serve each eligible preschooler to attend full-day programs
- In districts with existing full-day kindergarten programs, eligible kindergarteners can be served in full-day kindergarten programs using one .5 FTE ECARE slot per child.
- Districts have flexibility to use their ECARE slots differently from year to year.
- As with all CPP expansions, the award of expansion slots is made through a competitive application.
- The planning process and application development in districts with existing CPP programs must be guided by the district preschool advisory council.
- The review panel will consider factors such as the quality of the application, the quality of the program plan, the level of unmet need, the degree of community partnership, district risk factors such as dropout rates and history of unspent or “carryover” funds in the district CPP program.