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Smith CountySchool System


Gina Morris
Pre-K Supervisor
615-735-9625 (office)
Voluntary Pre-K (VPK)
The Voluntary Pre-K initiative provides Tennessee's four -year-old children--with an emphasis on four year olds who are at-risk--an opportunity to develop school readiness skills (pre-academic and social skills).
To be eligible for this program, children must be four years old and reside in the Smith County School District area. In addition, students with at-risk needs are given first priority in the program.
If you have a child that will be four years old before August 15 2019 and you reside in the Smith County School District, we would like to extend an invitation to you to consider enrolling your child in our Pre-K program.  Pre-K Registration and Application day is held in May each year.
You may also call the school to make an appointment to visit a Pre-K classroom.

If you are interested in completing an application for enrolling in the Voluntary Pre-K Program for the 2019-2020 school year, please read the following information provided by the Smith County Board of Education. 

Qualifications for 2019-2020 Voluntary Pre-K Program eligibility include:

  1. Child must be four years old on or before August 15, 2019. 
  2. Child must qualify for economically disadvantaged per Income Eligible application and income guidelines set by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.
  3. Dependent children, as defined by T.C.A. 49-6-101(f)(1)(A) whose parent was killed, died as a direct result of injuries received as a result of war, or is or has been officially reported as a prisoner of war or missing in action.
  4. Children with disabilities, children identified as English Language Learners (EL), in state custody, or those at risk for failure due to circumstances of abuse or neglect.
  5. Children who meet other at-risk criteria which may include Tennessee Early Intervention Program (TEIS), children in single parent homes or being raised by grandparents. Our goal is to assist families and the community in providing developmentally appropriate support and services.

Our Pre-K program is not a “drop-in” program.  Regular, on-time attendance is required for 180 days a year (we follow the school calendar for holidays, breaks, and snow days) and our hours are 8 AM to 3 PM.  We participate in Smith County School System’s Child Nutrition Services, offering children breakfast and lunch.  

Applications for 2019-2020 will be available at all elementary schools and all sites with pre-k programs.  

If you are interested in completing an application for enrolling in the Voluntary Pre-k Program for the 2019-2020 school year, you may call your school for an appointment time; however, appointments are not necessary.

Application Registration Dates for 2019-2020 school year: 

  • Carthage Elementary School – April 18 (all day) & May 21 & May 22 
    • Alicia Blair 615-735-0433
  • Defeated Elementary School – April 12 (all day) & May 21 (afternoon) & May 22 (all day)
    • Hope Dillard 615-774-3150
  • Forks River Elementary School – April 18 (all day) & May 21 (afternoon) & May 22
    • Ellie Spike 615-897-2676
  • New Middleton Elementary School – May 21 (all day) & May 22 (all day)
    • Wendy Cond 615-683-8411
  • Union Heights Elementary School  – April 12 & May 21 (afternoon)
    • Peggy Denton 615-735-1975

Phone calls to families confirming their child’s status will be sent out first week of July 2019.

For Tennessee’s Voluntary Pre-K program, first priority for enrollment is all children who meet free or reduced price lunch income guidelines and are four years old by Aug. 15. If space is available after enrolling children who qualify for free or reduced lunch, the program may enroll children who have disabilities, are English Language Learners, are in state custody, or who are at risk as defined by U.S.C. § 1400 et sec. , regardless of income. If space is still available after the first 20 days of the new school year, the school district can submit a request to the Office of Early Learning to enroll all other children at that time.