Prekindergarten Participation


Prekindergarten Participation, 2018

What does this measure?

The number of children enrolled in public or private prekindergarten education programs, expressed as a percentage of all children age 4.

Why is this important?

Early emphasis on reading and social skills prepares children to succeed later in their education.

How is our region doing?

In 2018, 53% of MetroWest 4-year olds were enrolled in a public or private prekindergarten education program, similar to the state rate. Both the region and state have seen a steady increase in public prekindergarten participation since 2002, from 25% to 40% at the regional level, and from 27% to 42% at the state level. Over that time, participation in private prekindergarten programs increased slightly, from 12% to 13% in MetroWest and 11% to 12% at the state level. Overall in the region in 2018, there were about 13,900 children enrolled in public prekindergarten programs and about 4,600 in private programs.

Within the region, the share of 4-year-olds enrolled in public prekindergarten was highest in Worcester County, at 49%, compared to 37% in Middlesex and 35% in Norfolk. Private prekindergarten was more prevalent in Middlesex (15%) and Norfolk (14%) than in Worcester (9%).

Notes about the data

Enrollment is based on counts made on Oct. 1 of each year.

Prekindergarten Participation, 2018

Source: Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education

Number of Children Enrolled in Prekindergarten, 2018

Source: Massachusetts Department of Elementary & Secondary Education

Early Prenatal Care by Mother's Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Children Living in Poverty Increasing
Children Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Parent Families Increasing
Single-Parent Families by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Disengaged Youth Decreasing
Reports of Domestic Violence Maintaining
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Increasing
Households Without Vehicles Maintaining
Means of Transportation to Work Not Applicable
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Average Charitable Contribution Maintaining
Protected Land Not Applicable
Drug Poisoning Mortality Rate Increasing
Crimes Against People Decreasing
Incarceration Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Change in Total Population Increasing
Change in Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Language Diversity Increasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Change in Population by Age/Gender Not Applicable
Seniors Living Alone Decreasing
People with Disabilities Maintaining
Change in Total Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Unemployment Rate Maintaining
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
High-Tech Jobs Decreasing
Female to Male Earnings Ratio Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
Student Performance on Grade 3 English, by Student Subgroup Not Applicable
Chronically Absent Students Decreasing
High School Cohort Graduation Rate by Student Group Increasing
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
People Living in Poverty, by Education Level Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Household Receiving Temporary Assistance Maintaining
Participation in Food Assistance by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
80/20 Income Ratio Maintaining
Access to Financial Services, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Homeownership Rates Increasing
Homeownership Rates, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Homeownership Increasing
Cost of Rent Not Applicable
Homelessness Increasing