Early Learning

Early Learning at Seattle Public Schools

Research has firmly established that investing in early learning yields powerful benefits for children, both in early elementary and as a cornerstone to their overall educational success.

Yet it is not enough to provide quality education for a year or two in a child's early years. At Seattle Public Schools our vision is for every child to experience a quality, cohesive and joyful learning experience from PreK through third grade that will provide the strong foundation needed to succeed in school and life.


Seattle Preschool Program   Voters overwhelmingly approved an initiative in fall 2014 to fund high-quality preschool throughout the city. Seattle Public Schools is collaborating with the City of Seattle Department of Education and Early Learning to manage multiple preschool classrooms. Visit our Preschool web page for more information.

Give your budding student a Head Start! This federally funded educational opportunity serves 3- and 4-year-olds and their families with half-day programs at various schools in our district. Visit our Head Start webpage for more information.

Jump Start  

Get a Jump Start on kindergarten with our FREE transition program for new students. Held August 21-25, Jump Start offers children a chance to get comfortable in their new school, meet teachers and staff, and feel ready and confident when school starts in September. This flyer lists participating schools. Visit our Jump Start webpage for more information.

PreK-Kindergarten Exchange

Seattle Schools wants to partner with early learning community professionals to ensure a smooth transition to kindergarten for children who receive ongoing regular care outside the home.  One way we can work together is to share information about a child's strengths and capacities as a learner with the Kindergarten teacher at the school where the child has been assigned.  No information will be shared without a parent/guardian's written permission.

Click on the appropriate program model to learn how, when and what information to transmit:

Child Care Options 

Finding a quality child care arrangement for your child is a big decision for families. We have collected a list of child care providers who provide before and after school child care as well as preschool programs at schools in the district. Please contact the provider directly to learn more about enrollment and their programs. Start your child care search on our child care options webpage.

How to Register for Kindergarten at Seattle Public Schools

English (translations to come)


From parents to community partners, we collect useful early learning resources for you. Visit our resources webpage.

Social Emotional Wellness: RULER

Seattle Public School's RULER is a social-emotional literacy curriculum developed by Yale University’s Center for Emotional Intelligence. The Early Learning department has spearheaded the adoption of this curriculum, which is now in use at 50 elementary and middle schools across the district. Learn more about RULER.

Our RULER program was recently featured on the Seattle.gov blog in a post called "How do you feel? Ask a kindergartner." In the article, the host of the Seattle Channel Brian Callanan gives a helpful overview of how the program is helping students manage their emotions. Read the Seattle Channel story.

kindergarten students and teacher

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