Prekindergarten Participation

Prekindergarten Participation

What does this measure?

The number of children ages 3 or 4 enrolled in public pre-kindergarten education programs, expressed as a percentage of all children ages 3 or 4.

Why is this important?

Early emphasis on reading, numeracy and social skills prepares children to succeed in kindergarten and lays the foundation for success throughout their educational careers.

How is our county performing?

In 2019, 20% of Berks County 3- and 4-year-olds were enrolled in a pre-kindergarten program, lower than the Pennsylvania rate of 23%. Participation in Berks has increased 10 percentage points since 2007, similar to the increase at the state level.

Enrollment in Berks County in 2019 was higher than Chester (9%), Montgomery (9%), Lancaster (14%) and Lehigh (18%) counties, but less than Lebanon (23%) and Schuylkill (22%). Of surrounding counties, Berks has seen the greatest increase (10 percentage points) in enrollment since 2007.

Notes about the data

Data are from KidsCount. Includes the unduplicated count of PA Pre-K Counts, Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program and Child Care Works enrollments in Keystone STARS 3 and 4; Head Start; public school pre-k. The Pennsylvania increase in enrollment in 2016-17 is in part driven by the creation and launch of the public PHLpreK program in Philadelphia.

There may be additional research available on this topic. Click on Reports and Resources to learn more.

Prekindergarten Participation
Berks County10%12%12%12%12%13%12%15%14%16%18%20%
Berks County Regions
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County3%4%4%4%4%4%4%7%7%7%8%9%
Lancaster County9%12%11%11%10%10%10%11%11%12%15%14%
Lebanon County22%29%25%24%22%22%23%25%25%27%24%23%
Lehigh County11%14%14%14%14%14%13%15%15%15%14%18%
Montgomery County3%5%4%5%5%4%4%6%6%7%10%9%
Schuylkill County19%23%23%24%21%20%20%19%23%25%28%22%

Source: KidsCount

Number of Prekindergarten Participants
Berks County1,1421,2921,3101,3611,2911,3121,2781,5701,5091,7091,8592,117
Berks County Regions
Reading city
Berks County Peers
Chester County4515155505085015125279449019291,0311,186
Lancaster County1,2151,5381,5131,4841,4631,4221,3771,6051,5461,7362,1112,001
Lebanon County666848749739760751788871865924872785
Lehigh County8981,1321,1051,1691,2031,2211,1611,3241,2751,2941,3001,576
Montgomery County6998948799458778377211,1211,1291,4341,8251,703
Schuylkill County551664670693690657641623743816837703

Source: KidsCount

Adults Who are Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Students in K-6 Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Students in 7-12 Overweight or Obese Not Applicable
Physically Inactive Adults Not Applicable
Students Eligible for Free/Reduced Price Lunch Increasing
Early Prenatal Care Increasing
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
Live Births to Teen Mothers Decreasing
Population by Age Not Applicable
Children with Elevated Blood Lead Levels Maintaining
Change in Population by Age and Gender Not Applicable
Change in Total Population by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Households by type Not Applicable
Foreign-Born Population Increasing
Seniors Living Alone Maintaining
Language Diversity Increasing
Unemployment Rate Increasing
Change in Labor Force Decreasing
Employment to Population ratio Decreasing
Change in Jobs by Sector Not Applicable
Sector Share of Total Jobs Not Applicable
Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
Change in Average Salary by Sector Not Applicable
People Entering/Leaving County/Region for Work Not Applicable
Public Assistance Maintaining
Spending for Local Governments Maintaining
Spending for Counties Maintaining
Spending for School Districts Maintaining
Prekindergarten Participation Increasing
English Language Learners Increasing
Students Receiving Special Education Services Increasing
Per Student Spending Maintaining
High School Cohort Graduation Rate Increasing
Education Levels of Adults Not Applicable
Education Levels of Adults, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Brain Drain/Gain Maintaining
Plans of High School Graduates Not Applicable
Enrollment in Local Colleges Decreasing
Median Household Income Maintaining
Median Household Income by Household Type Not Applicable
Living Wage Not Applicable
People Living in Poverty Increasing
Working Poor Maintaining
People Receiving Federal Food Assistance Increasing
People Receiving Supplemental Security Income Increasing
Health Status Not Applicable
People Enrolled in Medicaid Managed Care Increasing
People Without Health Insurance Decreasing
Cancer Incidence Decreasing
Prevalence of Mental Illness Maintaining
Vacant Housing Units Increasing
Homeownership Rates Decreasing
Cost of Homeownership Maintaining
Cost of Homeownership, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Cost of Rent Increasing
Cost of Rent, by Race/Ethnicity Not Applicable
Single-Family Home Sales Increasing
Median Single-Family Home Sale Price Maintaining
Tourism Spending Maintaining
Voter Registration Rate Decreasing
Voter Participation Rate Decreasing
Average Charitable Giving Maintaining
Contributions as a Percentage of Income Maintaining
Households With Internet Access Not Applicable
Arts, Entertainment and Recreation Establishments Maintaining
Toxic Chemical Releases Decreasing
Violent Crimes Maintaining
Property Crimes Decreasing
Incarceration Rates Maintaining
Drug Abuse Offenses Increasing
Drug Abuse Arrests Increasing
Protection from Domestic Abuse Maintaining
Average Travel Time to Work Increasing
Crashes Involving Alcohol Decreasing
Households Without Vehicles Decreasing