Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK)

  • The Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) program is funded by the Office of Early Learning at the Florida Department of Education. All children who reside in Florida, turning age four by September 1st of the school year are eligible to participate in a VPK program.

VPK Program Details

  • The School District of Manatee County (SDMC) offers VPK to families as either a 540-instructional hour school year program or a 300-instructional hour summer program. Families may select either the school year or the summer, but not both. All VPK programs follow the school district calendar.

    VPK AM
    Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten (VPK) is offered as a FREE 3-hour (8:30am-11:30am) morning program.
    Verification of current address is required to complete enrollment.

    VPK Plus Full-Day Program
    Fees for extended VPK Plus Full-Day Program (8:30am - 3:20pm) are determined by the student's ZONED school.
    To determine a student's zoned school, visit https://www.manateeschools.net/schoollocator and search for the enrolling parent/guardian’s home address.

    VPK Plus (Title 1)
    The VPK Plus (Title 1) program is FREE if the student is zoned to an eligible Title 1 school (Abel, Ballard, Bayshore Elementary, Blackburn, Daughtrey, Manatee Elementary, Moody, Oneco, Palmetto Elementary, Palm View, Prine, Rogers Garden, Samoset, Sea Breeze or Tillman) -AND- attends at a participating Title 1 location.

    VPK Plus
    If a student is NOT zoned to a Title 1 school, the VPK Plus program requires a one-time $30 non-refundable registration fee, and a monthly fee of $300.

    Children who are 4 years of age by September 1 of the school year qualify for VPK.
    Parents must obtain a VPK Certificate of Eligibility (COE) issued by the Early Learning Coalition of Manatee County to participate.
    VPK students must be potty-trained.

    Transportation is NOT provided for VPK students. Families are responsible for transporting the VPK student to and from school.

How Do I Apply?

  • All VPK applications must be approved by the Department of Early Learning. Applying does not guarantee a seat. Availability is limited due to school capacity. For availability or waitlist options, please call (941) 753-0958 x38200.

    Do you have a current VPK Certificate of Eligibility?
    To participate in VPK, you must have a VPK Certificate of Eligibility issued by the Early Learning Coalition of Manatee County for the current school year. To obtain a certificate, please visit https://familyservices.floridaearlylearning.com or call (941) 757-2900.

    Gather Documents.
    Gather and scan the documents on the VPK Registration Checklist. If your application is approved, these documents MUST be submitted prior to the student attending the VPK program.

Participating Locations

  • Locations are subject to change based on specific school enrollment and unit allocations.

    2024-2025 School Year Locations:

    Anna Maria
    Bayshore Elementary
    Braden River Elementary
    Johnson K-8
    Lakewood Ranch High
    Myakka City
    Manatee Elementary
    Palma Sola
    Palmetto Elementary
    Sea Breeze


    2024 Summer Location: