WILDWOOD — The city school district will expand its preschool offerings this year due to an increase in funding announced Sept. 1 from the state Department of Education.
"We are very excited about this new opportunity for the children of Wildwood," said Superintendent J. Kenyon Kummings.
Wildwood will receive $361,740 to create two 3-year-old, full-day classrooms for 30 students to add to its three 4-year-old, full-day classrooms. Kummings said the program will be in place by Oct. 2 and available on a first-come, first-serve basis to all Wildwood residents who turn 3 by Oct. 2.
Kummings said the fact the district can begin teaching students one year earlier will have an incredible impact on students.
Twenty-nine districts applied by the Aug. 21 deadline for the additional $25 million available to either extend hours or increase the number of children served, according to the DOE. Nineteen districts were approved, and the remaining 10, including Stafford Township, Galloway Township and Wildwood Crest, are still awaiting review.
Only school districts that were already receiving preschool education aid, but not those former Abbott districts that were already fully funded, could apply.
Districts that are awarded must implement their programs no later than Nov. 1.