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NC Pre-K

PreK students coloring and writing alphabet

About the NC Pre-K Program

Dare County's preschool program is a blended NC Pre-K and Title I funded program. The program serves over 150 students annually at all five elementary schools (Cape Hatteras Elementary, First Flight Elementary, Kitty Hawk Elementary, Manteo Elementary, and Nags Head Elementary). The program emphasizes kindergarten readiness skills and provides our youngest students with a rich learning environment. 

Quality preschool opportunities benefit communities by decreasing retention and dropouts, and by improving overall student achievement.
The program is guided by an Advisory Committee comprised of representatives of Dare County Schools, Children and Youth Partnership, local licensed child care centers, parents of preschool-age child(ren), child care resource and referral agency or other child-serving agency representative, Department of Social Services, and Dare County Schools' exceptional children's program.
Annual meetings are held to review contract revisions/updates based on changes to NC Pre-K, develop and approve operational policies and procedures, promote collaboration and shared responsibility between and among agencies serving young children, and provide oversight for the program.

Program Eligibility

To be eligible for this program, students must be: 
  • 4 years old by August 31, 2024.
  • A resident of Dare County.
  • Eligibility is determined by parent's income level and other risk factors.
  • Official pre-K registration for the 2024-2025 school year will open April 8, 2024. 
Program Contacts

Caitlin Spruill
Elementary Director
252-480-8888 extension: 1954

Deanie Midgett
Administrative Assistant
252-480-8888 extension: 1904

Application questions should be directed to the Central Office at 252-480-8888 extension: 1954.

Pre-K Applications Now Open for 2024-2025

If your child meets the eligibility requirements and you would like to apply for NC Pre-K, use the button below to download the application. Please note that your child must be 4 years-old on or before August 31, 2024 to be eligible. 


Submit application

Due to confidentiality concerns, applications will not be accepted electronically. All required documents must be attached in order for your child’s application to be processed. Please complete the application by May 20, 2024. Return the completed application with all required documents to Dare County Schools Central Office or any elementary school in-person or mail to:

Dare County Schools
Post Office Box 1508
Nags Head, North Carolina 27959

Need Assistance?

For additional information, or to schedule an appointment for help in filling out the application, contact Dare County Schools’ NC Pre-K Coordinator, Tricia Nicewonger at or 252-480-8880 ext. 1893.