The NYCDOE 3-K/Pre-K Process

Early Literacy Resources


Every day, there are fun and easy ways to help your child build a lifelong love of reading.

Ages 3–4 (3-K and Pre-K)


  • Talk to your child in any language.
  • Make up stories together. Take turns imagining what comes next!
  • Describe the sounds you hear, like beeping cars, vrooming buses, and barking dogs.


  • Sing songs and play rhyming word games together, in any language.
  • Visit the playground and count each time the swing goes back and forth!
  • Go to the park and look for interesting objects. Compare them by shape and color.


  • Read street signs, labels, and even cereal boxes!
  • Help your child pick out their own books at your local library. Sign up for a free library card!
  • Re-read your child’s favorite books in any language your family speaks.

Who Can Apply to 3-K?


Apply to 3-K the year your child turns three. Your child must be a current New York City resident to apply. 

To learn about 3-K options for your child now, fill out the Get-in-Touch form at 3-K Finder(Open external link)

Subscribe to our email list to get updates on when and how to apply for the 2019-2020 school year.

3-K Details Here

Want to Apply for Pre-K?


 Children Born in 2015 can 

apply this winter.

Children born in 2015 will begin pre-K in September 2019. Your child must be a current New York City resident to apply.

 All of the following students are welcome to apply to pre-K:

  • Current 3-K students at public district schools, Pre-K Centers, and NYC Early Education Centers (NYCEECs)
  • Current students in three-year-old programs at charter schools, private schools, parochial schools, or other preschools
  • Students with disabilities
  • Students with accessibility needs
  • Students learning English
  • Students in temporary housing
  • LGBTQ and gender nonconforming students
  • Students who are new to NYC public schools—if you move to NYC during the school year, visit the New Students page to learn how to enroll.

Learn more about the Pre-K Process

Waitlists. Did you Know?

3-K/Pre-K Waitlists have Expired

Newly arriving 3-K families should be directed to fill out the Get in Touch form to receive a call from the Outreach Team to explore what 3-K options may be available. 

Families may also register directly at district schools or pre-K centers.


NYC Kids and You!

 NYC Service is partnering with Administration for Children Services to encourage  neighbors to seek out opportunities to tutor, mentor and coach youth in their communities. 

It takes a village to raise a child. Help an organization near you today! 

Help NYC Kids Today