First Steps 4K offers free, full-day four-year-old kindergarten to qualifying children in South Carolina. We partner with more than 250 licensed child care centers and private schools across the state, making it easy for families to find a high-quality program that meets their needs.
Check to see if your child is eligible for the First Steps 4K program
Find a First Steps 4K Program near you
Submit an application to enroll in the First Steps 4K program
Families can select the private, community-based, or faith-based program of their choice. All First Steps 4K programs are in-person, 5 days per week, throughout the school year. Most providers offer a full day (8 hour) program and/or operate year-round, continuing through summer.Find a Program
Research shows that children who attend a high-quality preschool program are more successful in kindergarten and beyond. First Steps 4K aims to increase participation, quality, and professional development in private, community-based, and faith-based 4K programs across the state.
children served with the First Steps 4K program in 2021-2022
approved First Steps 4K program providers in 2021-2022
Early Care & EducationQuality Enhancement
Intensive support to child care centers, Head Start and preschool classrooms to improve quality
Early Care & EducationQuality Counts
Quality Counts is a community-based child care quality improvement strategy, designed to build and sustain high quality in early care and education programs.
Early Care & EducationChild Care Scholarships
Eligible children receive tuition-free enrollment at quality child care centers
Early Care & EducationChild Care
Providing local families with access to high-quality early care and education.
Early Care & EducationEarly Head Start
Nationally, Early Head Start programs serve over 160,000 children and pregnant women annually.
Early Care & EducationTraining and Professional Development
Certified and registered training hours for the early childhood workforce
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