ACPS Preschool Program FAQs (Bright Stars, ECSE Head Start)

Which programs can I apply for?

With a single application, families can apply to all three programs offered through Albemarle County Public Schools. When applying to more than one preschool program, families are asked to indicate their program preference. Please note that a parent's program choice is always considered but cannot be guaranteed.

Is there an attendance policy for Pre-K students?

Regular and consistent attendance is an expectation of all Pre-K students. Additionally, the teacher, Family Support worker, school counselor, administrator, or Preschool Lead Coach will contact parents/guardians to schedule meetings, provide support, and set goals if a child has a pattern of being chronically late, leaving early, or has persistent absences. Continued and significant absences without excusable cause may lead to the child being withdrawn from the program.

Does my child have to be toilet trained to enroll in Pre-K?

Your child is expected to be able to take care of self-help tasks such as dressing, undressing, and toilet needs. If a child is not toilet-trained, the school staff will work with families to develop routines and procedures for home and school to help the child learn. No child will be denied acceptance into our preschool programs if they are not toilet trained.

Is transportation to the preschool programs provided for my child?

Children can access ACPS bus transportation if they live within the school zone of the Bright Stars or ECSE class they are accepted and enrolled. Children can access ACPS bus transportation if they live within the school zone of the Head Start program offered at Agnor-Hurt, Crozet, Hollymead, or Greer Elementary.

If I can't apply online, where can I get an application?

To have an application emailed or mailed to you, contact:

All ACPS elementary schools, the Albemarle County Department of Social Services, and the ACPS Office of Instruction, located on the 3rd floor of the McIntire Road County Office building can provide families with paper applications.

A PDF version of the application can be downloaded at go2grow
Families can also contact a Go2Grow Navigator at or call (434) 459-0282. (Se habla español)

When will my application be processed?

An application is considered complete and will be processed when all of the required documents listed below are received:

  1. Application ~ Online (preferred) or paper
  2. Income Verification Documentation~
    Income from any of the sources for the child's parent(s)/guardian(s)/legal custodian, or other person having control or charge of the child must be provided.
    Income sources include:
    • Employment Earnings 
    • Unemployment/Worker's compensation payments
    • Veterans' benefit payments
    • Survivor benefits
    • Pension/Retirement benefits
    • Interest and Dividends
    • Rents and royalties
    • Estates and trusts income
    • Educational assistance/scholarship(s)
    • Child support
    • Financial assistance from outside the household
      Income verification documentation includes:
    • Current TANF award letter
    • Current SNAP award letter
    • Signed & Dated Letter from your employer
    • Supplemental Security Income letter
    • Medicaid letter (parent/guardian receiving Medicaid)
    • Current 1040 Income Tax Return(s)
    • Current W-2 tax forms from all places of employment
    • Current paystubs
      • If paid weekly - (4 consecutive pay stubs)
      • If paid every two weeks (3 consecutive pay stubs)
      • If paid two times per month (3 consecutive pay stubs)
      • If paid monthly (2 consecutive pay stubs)
      • If paid yearly (1 pay stub)
  3. Address verification documentation includes:  ~ One of the documents listed below must be provided:
    • Current deed, lease, or a notarized shared housing form
      • The above forms must be supported by a utility bill such as electric, cable, landline phone, or water in the parent(s)/guardian(s) name
        *Driver’s Licenses and W2 forms are not acceptable proof of residency documents
        **If accepted, families must provide additional address verification documentation as part of the school registration process. 

If I experience technical difficulties when uploading my application, who do I contact?

Contact a Go2Grow Navigator at or call (434) 326-5396, ext. 740 (English) 434-326-4490 (Español)

How do I submit a paper application or paper copies of a supporting document?

Documents can be submitted in person or mailed to:
All ACPS elementary schools, the Albemarle County Department of Social Services, Head Start, and the Albemarle County Public Schools, Office of Instruction can provide families with paper applications.

  • The United Way of Greater Charlottesville front office at 200 Garrett Street, Suite I, Charlottesville, VA 22902
  • ACPS Department of Instruction is located in the Albemarle County Office Building, at 401 McIntire Road, Charlottesville, VA 22902
  • Albemarle County Department of Social Services is located at 1600 5th Street, Charlottesville, VA 22903.
  • Head Start offices are located  at 1025 Park Street, Charlottesville, VA 22901

What if I do not have an original birth certificate?

Birth certificates may be obtained from the Department of Vital Statistics in the state where the child was born. DMV will also issue original birth certificates with no wait if your child was born in Virginia. The Albemarle County Health Department may also be able to assist you if your child was born in Virginia. It can sometimes be a long process, so we encourage you to obtain the certificate as soon as possible. If you are accepted and registered, you will have to have the original birth certificate before your child can start school. If you have a birth affidavit, you only have 30 days to produce the original. Without it, your child may not attend school.

Is there before/after school care for Pre-K students?

ACPS does not provide before/after school care for Pre-K students.

As an ACPS employee, do I receive automatic enrollment into the Pre-K program?

No, employees who are residents of Albemarle County must go through the same application and eligibility process as any other family.

When will I hear about my application?

  • Families will begin hearing about their application status mid-May.
  • Families who turn applications in after May 30th will be notified as soon as possible.