Preschool the Idaho way

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Launched in October 2018, Preschool the Idaho Way aims to develop high-quality, affordable preschool opportunities for families by equipping Idahoans with the tools and resources they need to create local solutions.

Preschool the Idaho Way is focused on creating early learning collaboratives across the state. Collaboratives draw upon local expertise and build partnerships among community-based programs such as Head Start, in-home and center-based child care providers, faith-based organizations, school districts, parents and other stakeholders.

By pooling resources such as space, transportation and personnel, collaboratives can offer affordable, comprehensive early learning services that otherwise wouldn’t be available to many families. It’s a model that has already been successful in several Idaho communities, including the Caldwell School District; the Basin School District, which includes Idaho City; and the Kendrick Joint School District, which includes Juliaetta.

To help create these collaboratives, Idaho AEYC has created an in-depth toolkit and is offering communities an opportunity to apply for a grant that will support the planning and/or soft costs of developing, expanding or enhancing preschool programs for children ages 4 to 5. These grants will range from $5,000 to $10,000.

For more information about Preschool the Idaho Way, contact project director Martin Balben at


Idaho AEYC is working throughout the state to educate parents, families and community leaders about the importance of high-quality early learning. Preschool the Idaho Way will put our state on a path to invest in Idaho families, early learning professionals and our youngest children. We aim to ensure that all families in Idaho have access to affordable, high- quality early learning programs, regardless of their income.

This work is generously funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation of Battle Creek, Michigan.