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Our Vision:

Every child in Washtenaw County enters school ready to succeed.

select-preschoolWhy Preschool?

Preschool is the essential first step in the lifelong education of your child. You can connect them to the opportunities that await them!

Childhood experts agree: Attending a high-quality preschool program prepares children for kindergarten and beyond. A good preschool experience will provide your child with the essential skills for a successful entry into school and life.

Preschool programs provide:

  • classroom experiences that prepare children for school success
  • opportunities to develop self confidence and independence
  • social and communication skills
  • literacy activities and skills that prepare children to learn to read

Quality preschool programs also develop children’s intellectual capacities; give them indoor and outdoor play on a daily basis and provide support for parents and caregivers—with access to community programs and services that support family life and child development.

The majority of preschools in Washtenaw County are tuition based, and you can find information on them through Great Start to Quality. However, there are quality free preschool programs in every community in Washtenaw County for children of low or moderate income families.


Free Quality Preschool for 3 and 4 year olds in Washtenaw County

  • Studies show that children who participate in a high quality preschool prgram in the year or two before kindergarten are better prepared for school academically, socially and emotionally.
  • Free quality preschool programs are available in every community for Washtenaw County residents.
  • Teacher are highly qualified and skilled in working with young learners. 

The Washtenaw County Quality Preschool Partnership is a collaboration of school districts and community-based providers who offer state (GSRP) and federally (Head Start) funded preschool services for low to moderate income families.

All the partner agencies are committed to supporting families and ensuring that every preschool child enters kindergarten ready to learn. These programs offer a quality educational preschool experience.

Qualifying is easier than you might think. For example, a family of 4 earning up to $60,750 a year may qualify.* Space is limited. To see if your child is eligible, visit If you do not have Internet access or need help completing the form, call 1-800-777-2861.

* Participating preschool programs are funded by the US Department of Health and Human Services and the Michigan Department of Education. A school-year program is valued at $7,450 per year based on full-day GSRP.

Map of free quality preschool programs in Washtenaw County

Information on each of the county's free preschool programs, including the availability of transportation and wraparound child care

Head Start

Head Start is a federally-funded preschool program.  Its success is based on compassionate partnerships between Head Start program staff and parents. In Michigan, local Head Start programs work with families to remove barriers to success and to deepen parents’ ability to support their children.

Visit the Michigan Head Start Association website.

Great Start Readiness Program

The Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP) is a state-funded preschool program with aims that are similar to those of Head Start.  While fewer children qualify for Head Start than GSRP, Great Start Readiness Program also serves families whose circumstances indicate a need for free early childhood education.

Visit the Michigan Department of Education website about GSRP.

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