EarlyLearn programs provide free or low-cost child care and education for children six weeks to two years old. There are hundreds of programs in New York City that offer safe and positive learning environments for children.
- Child care options include:
- Infant and Toddler programs for children aged six weeks to two years. These take place in centers or homes for up to 10 hours a day.
- Early Head Start programs for pregnant mothers, infants, and toddlers. These provide services for at least eight hours a day.
- If you qualify and there is a seat available, your child can begin a program anytime during the year.
- As long as your child has legal status, they are eligible for care regardless of the parents’ legal status.
- Eligibility is based on your family’s income, size, and needs.
- Families will need to pay some of the cost of child care if they do not get Cash Assistance, are not in foster care, or are not homeless.
More ways to get help with this program
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Get more information about EarlyLearn from NYCDOE.
Ask for “EarlyLearn” if you need help finding a program.
Early Head Start Programs
The best way to find out if your family is eligible for Early Head Start is to contact a program directly. Your family may qualify for Early Head Start if at least one of these categories applies to you:
- You live in temporary housing
- You receive HRA Cash Assistance
- You receive SSI (Supplemental Security Insurance)
- You are enrolling a child who is in foster care
- Your family income falls below a certain amount
Your family may qualify for these programs if your family’s income falls below a certain amount. You must also have at least one of these approved “reasons for care”:
- You work 10+ hours per week
- You are in an educational or vocational training program
- You are enrolled in a 4-year college
- You are starting to look for work or have been looking for work for up to 6 months. This includes looking for work while receiving unemployment
- You live in temporary housing
- You are attending services for domestic violence
Take a short survey to see if you might be eligible for this or 30 other programs.Am I Eligible?
The best way to apply is in person. Find a program on MySchools and visit it. Program staff will help you complete the application and make sure there are no mistakes.
- Download the application in your language or call 311 to request one in the mail.
- Email your application to email@example.com
If you already get HRA benefits, apply at your assigned HRA Benefits Access Center instead.
The best way to apply is in person. Find a program on MySchools and visit it. Program staff will help you complete the application and make sure there are no mistakes. If you already get HRA benefits, apply at your assigned HRA Benefits Access Center instead.
- Find a program on MySchools.
- Click “More Filters” and check any of the options under “EarlyLearn”.
- Then, type in your home address to find a program near you.
- Visit a program. Staff will help you complete the application and make sure there are no mistakes.
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