Chicago Public Schools Announces 2024-25 Preschool Application Launch 

CPS encourages families, caregivers, and community organizations to attend upcoming application webinars

CHICAGO—The School Year 2024-25 application opens Tuesday, April 9 for Chicago Public School’s (CPS) free full-day preschool program for four-year-olds and half-day preschool program for three-year-olds. Families can apply via the Chicago Early Learning website and application portal. The aim is to provide better educational and social outcomes for all children, especially those with the greatest needs.

Over the last several years, the District has expanded early childhood learning opportunities, beginning with the most under-resourced neighborhoods, as part of a city-wide initiative with the Department of Family Support and Services (DFSS) to ensure every four-year-old in each of the city’s 77 communities has access to high-quality preschool programming. 

“We are excited to welcome children across the city to apply for our free high-quality preschool programs,” said CPS CEO Pedro Martinez. “It’s important to us that families are aware of their options for preschool, and can start this important part of their children’s educational journey.”

The free CPS full-day preschool programs meet all federal, state and local education standards and all schools are engaged in continuous quality improvement. Preschool programs are awarded a Gold, Silver or Bronze Circle of Quality, as determined by a state-approved independent review. Eighty-eight percent of CPS preschool programs meet the Gold Circle of Quality or the highest standards for quality in three areas: learning environment and teaching, administration, and training and education. 

In March, the District hosted webinars attended by more than 600 families and caregivers. The District aims to collaborate with the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) to host additional webinars scheduled for later this month and early May. 

Upcoming webinar information (link here):

Wed. Apr. 24, 20241 p.m. – 2 p.m.
Thurs. May 9, 20244 p.m. – 5 p.m.

“CPS Pre-K classrooms are joyful learning environments that set a strong foundation for future success in school and ignite a lifelong passion for learning,” said Chief of Early Childhood Education, Leslie Mckinily. “We encourage families to explore schools in their neighborhood using the Chicago Early Learning website.”

More information about the CPS Preschool programs is available on the District’s website. Parents may also call the Chicago Early Learning Hotline at (312)-229-1690 for application support in both English and Spanish.

About Chicago Public Schools

Chicago Public Schools (CPS) is dedicated to providing a high-quality education to all students, beginning with the District’s free full-day preschool programming for four-year-old scholars and continuing through neighborhood, magnet and selective-enrollment elementary schools that provide a rigorous K-8 education with schools that specialize in the fine arts, world language and culture, dual language, STEM, International Baccalaureate (IB), classical programs, and more. The rising District-wide freshmen-on-track and high school graduation rates reflect the hard work of the CPS community, including families, staff, and students across 635 schools. CPS celebrates the diversity of its more than 322,000 students who cite 182 home languages. Learn more about CPS at and connect with CPS on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and LinkedIn.