(HealthNewsDigest.com) – Florida Atlantic University’s Board of Trustees has unanimously approved a 10-year facilities use agreement with Bezos Academy. This agreement will open a tuition-free, Montessori-inspired preschool for low-income families adjacent to FAU’s A.D. Henderson University School on FAU’s Boca Raton campus in fall 2022.
FAU is the first university in Florida and second in America to host the academy. It’s also only the second partnership and location announced in Florida after an affordable housing complex in Orlando.
“I would like to thank the board for their support. It’s fitting that we are the first state university in Florida to host Bezos Academy since it directly aligns with FAU’s long history of providing the whole community access to an excellent education,” said Joel Herbst, Ed.D., superintendent and assistant dean, PK-12 Schools and Educational Programs at FAU. “A.D. Henderson is a choice Title 1 school district that proves children from all economic backgrounds can excel if given the opportunity. Considering their mission, I can’t conceive of a better partner than Bezos Academy for a preschool program on our campus.”
Bezos Academy preschool will feature six classrooms and will offer year-round programming, five days a week, for children from low-income families between ages 3 and 5. The preschool will follow a schedule that is beneficial for children’s learning and growth, while also making it easier for parents who need to work outside the home. It will cover all the operating expenses for the preschool program at no cost to the families it serves. FAU’s colleges also will have opportunities to engage with the Academy’s programing on various levels.
“It’s exciting to partner with an institution like Florida Atlantic University, one of the state’s most diverse universities,” said Mike George, president of Bezos Academy. “We share their belief that everyone deserves access to a great education. We look forward to helping members of the community FAU serves pursue their dreams with the knowledge their children are learning in a safe, warm, and welcoming environment at no cost.”
Families earning up to 400 percent of the federal poverty level with children aged 3 to 4 are eligible to apply. More information and an application to the lottery-based selection process will be posted at www.bezosacademy.org once the school’s specific opening date is set.