Office of School Choice & Enrollment


Early Education Program

Our Collective Purpose 

The first years of life are a time of rapid development and tremendous importance: a child’s earliest experiences can significantly alter the quality of his or her adult life. Because a child’s early experiences are shaped by the world which we as parents, caregivers, teachers, service providers, and community members create for them, it is critical that we build a healthy, nurturing environment full of creativity and variety. If we create this environment in our community, we will put our children firmly on a path to lifelong success.

The best investment we can make as a community is in our children. We hope you will join us in our work to make New Haven a truly wonderful place for young children and their families.

About Our Programs

  • The Early Childhood Program offers a wide variety of early care and early education options for children age 6 weeks to 5 years old. 
  • Programs are operated by a variety of organizations such as non-profit community groups, for-profit groups, or a public institution such as a New Haven public school or college. 
  • Each program is unique and meets health and safety requirements for classrooms and teaching staff. 
  • Many programs meet national accreditation guidelines such as NAEYC accreditation.
  • Programs operate on multiple models including school-year/school-day, school-day/part-year or full-year/full-day. A school-day/school-year program typically runs Monday through Friday, from September to June. A full-year program may run January through December, with breaks for holidays as defined by the individual program. 
  • Programs can start as early as 7:30 am and end as late as 5:30 pm.

How can I get a list of all the programs or learn more? 

Visit New Haven Early Childhood Council at

Programs for infants and toddlers (children 6 weeks to 3 years of age) are in very short supply and can be expensive. Parents are encouraged to go to or call 2-1-1 Child Care 1-800-505-1000 for a comprehensive list of all available care.

Early Head Start & Head Start

Free for low-income New Haven families with children age 6 weeks to 3 years

New Haven Public Schools offers Head Start programming for 3 and 4 year olds in six locations. The program is free to City of New Haven residents who meet the Head Start income guidelines. 

Early Head Start programming is not offered by New Haven Public Schools but information regarding centers providing these services can be obtained by calling 1-800-505-1000. 

An application for Head Start or School Readiness begins with an appointment at the Early Childhood Department at 54 Meadow Street. To set up an appointment, call 475-220-1463.

New Haven Public Schools Head Start Locations

  • Fair Haven School
  • Benjamin Jepson Multi-Age Magnet School
  • John Martinez Sea & Sky STEM Magnet School
  • Lincoln-Bassett Community School
  • Dr. Mayo Early Childhood School
  • Truman School

For more info about any of these schools’ programs, please contact: Esther Pearson-Pinckney, 475-220-1463. Office located at: 54 Meadow Street, 3rd Floor, New Haven, CT 06511.

School Readiness

Pre-K programs on sliding fee scale for families with children ages 3 and 4 years old

School Readiness (SR) is a PreK program located in community-based centers and some NHPS elementary schools. Fees for School Readiness spaces are set by the State of Connecticut on a sliding scale which is based on gross parent income and family size. New Haven serves over 1,000 children with School Readiness funding.

New Haven Public Schools offers School Readiness programming in five locations.An application for Head Start or School Readiness begins with an appointment at the Early Childhood Department at 54 Meadow Street. To set up an appointment, call 475-220-1482.

New Haven Public Schools School Readiness Locations

  • Augusta Lewis Troup School
  • East Rock Community & Cultural Studies
  • Family Academy of Multilingual Exploration
  • Hill Central School
  • Nathan Hale School

For more info about any of these schools’ programs, please contact: Paul Lepri, 475-220-1482, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Office located at: 54 Meadow Street, New Haven, CT 06519.

The New Haven Board of Education is committed to the principles of equal employment opportunity for all job applicants and current employees. The Board bases all employment decisions upon the qualifications and abilities of each individual without regard to race, color, religious creed, age, marital status, national origin, ancestry, sex, sexual orientation, status as a veteran of the Vietnam era or as a disabled veteran, learning disability or present or past history of mental health impairment, intellectual disability or physical disability, including, but not limited to, blindness.  - New Haven Public Schools, New Haven, CT 

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