Pre K information
Welcome to the GWL Universal PreKindergarten information website! The tabs at the bottom of the screen have information about our PreK program - from eligibility to application & registration to how the lottery will work, should it be needed. There's even an FAQ section, which should answer any additional questions you may have.
If you want to skip all that and go directly to filling out the online form to indicate your desire to have your child attend our UPK program in the fall, you can go directly to the form by clicking this LINK .
We look forward to welcoming prekindergartners to Greenwood Lake Elementary School this fall!
The Greenwood Lake Union Free School District Prekindergarten Program offers 4-year-old children the opportunity to access an educational environment that is learner-centered and promotes the use of early literacy and emergent reading instruction based on effective, evidence-based practices. In alignment with New York State Prekindergarten Learning Standards, the program curricula promote balanced support between the development of early childhood social, emotional, motor and cognitive skills. All interested families please click on the link below.
What is Universal Pre-Kindergarten (UPK)?
UPK is a free preschool experience made possible through grants from the New York State
Education Department (NYSED) in conjunction with allocated funds in the school budget.. As long as the funding remains available and the District has the human resources and classroom space available, the District can offer the program.
Is the UPK program free?
Yes. There are no tuition fees paid by the family.
What is taught in the program?
The UPK program will follow the New York State Prekindergarten Learning Standards.
The Application Process
The UPK Application is for families to inform us of their interest in enrolling their child in the UPK program.
Eligible children must reside in the district and be 4 years old on or before December 1, 2024. The UPK application period will remain open until February 21, 2024. Please complete the application no later than February 21, 2024. (LINK to application.) The registration documents will be mailed out based off the responses from the UPK application.
What is the deadline for application into UPK?
The deadline for the UPK application is February 21, 2024 at 4:00 pm.
What happens once I submit my child’s UPK application?
The UPK application will have a closing date of Wednesday, February 21, 2024 at 4:00 pm. If more applications are received than seats available, a lottery will be held on February 26, 2024 at 12:00 p.m.
The Registration Process
The UPK Registration documents will be distributed to all selected families after the lottery process is complete.
Where do I find the registration forms once selected for the program?
Registration forms will be mailed after the lottery has occurred and selected families have been invited to register for the program.
Note: If selected, failure to complete your child’s registration during the assigned window will likely result in losing the spot.
The Lottery Process
If the district needs to conduct a lottery, each family will be assigned one lottery number, even those families with multiple siblings of the same age.
How will I know if my child has been chosen?
The UPK Office will email ALL applicants as soon as possible after the lottery selection to notify students if they were selected or placed on the waiting list. You will be notified via email and asked to confirm receipt of the email notification. If we do not receive confirmation from you that you received the email, we will then attempt to reach you by phone and finally, if necessary, by a letter mailed to your home address.
Will twins, triplets or siblings of the same age all be selected into the program?
If a lottery is not required, all siblings of the same age will be placed in the program. However, if a lottery is required, then if that family's number is called, all twins, triplets or multiple eligible siblings would also be added, provided there are enough spots left within the class' allotted number of spots. If there are not enough spots for each sibling, then we will contact the family directly to discuss options.
My child was not selected in the lottery - now what?
Anyone who was not selected in the lottery will be placed on the waiting list. If for any reason someone who earns a spot during the lottery does not complete the registration process, we will notify the next person on the waiting list.
How does the waiting list work?
If, for any reason, a child drops out of the UPK program, the next family on the waiting list will be offered the vacant spot. If the family declines the vacancy for any reason, they will be removed from the waiting list. This process will continue until all available seats are filled.
Frequently Asked Questions
Where is the Greenwood Lake UPK program located?
The UPK program is located at the Greenwood Lake Elementary School located at 80 Waterstone Rd., Greenwood Lake, NY 10925.
What are the hours of school?
The program is a full-day program, five days per week. School hours are 8:50 am - 3:20 pm. The program follows the Greenwood Lake Union Free School District calendar.
Who will the teacher be?
The teacher will be a New York State certified teacher.
Are there class size limits for UPK?
The maximum UPK class size is 20 students. Classes with 19 or 20 students require one teacher and two paraprofessionals. Classes of 18 or fewer students require one teacher and one paraprofessional.
Will breakfast and lunch be offered?
Yes, students will be able to participate in our school breakfast and/or lunch program or bring their own lunch to school. Our current 22-23 school breakfast/lunch rates are $1.60 for breakfast and $3.00 for lunch. The 23-24 meal rates will be determined in July. Snack time will be scheduled each day and students will be required to bring their own snack.
Families who believe they may be eligible for free or reduced meals should fill out an income application through the Food Services Department.
Is school bus transportation available?
The district is exploring the potential to provide transportation based on the same distance rules that apply to other elementary students. If transportation is provided, 3 year olds are mandated to be in an already incorporated child restraint system while on the school bus, 4 year olds are not. If transportation is offered, parents would still have the option to drop off and pick up.
Will my child receive their required services?
Yes, students who are provided services through CPSE will be able to receive such services during the course of the school day.
Will there be nap time?
Students are provided a regularly scheduled rest time. During this time, students are encouraged to rest, relax, and nap. Quiet activities will be provided for students who do not nap.
What if my question is not answered here?
You can email the following individuals:
General Questions Supt Hadden email@example.com
Classroom/Building Level Questions ES Principal Dianne Connolly firstname.lastname@example.org
Curriculum Questions Director Lina Polchinski email@example.com
Application, Registration, and Lottery Questions Theresa Finn firstname.lastname@example.org
How old do you have to be to be in the program?
Each child must be four (4) years old on or before December 1, 2024. *A child eligible for Kindergarten is not eligible for UPK.
My child will not be four (4) by the cutoff date, can they still attend?
No, to be eligible for the UPK program, a child must be four (4) years old on or before December 1, 2024.
What is the address criteria?
Each child must reside within the boundaries of the Greenwood Lake Union Free School District.
What are the immunization requirements?
Your child must be up-to-date with vaccination requirements.
Is there a religious exemption for immunization requirements?
New York State no longer offers a religious exemption for immunizations.
Should my child be potty trained?
While it is not a requirement for children to be potty trained to participate in UPK, if you have not already started to potty train your child, we highly recommend you do so as it will make your child’s transition into UPK much smoother. If your child is not fully potty trained when they start school, the District will work with you to develop a plan that supports your child using the toilet independently.