University of Illinois Urbana‑Champaign

About the data

Latest data: FY2021 (July 1, 2020 – June 30, 2021; school year 2020–2021)

For children age 3 and age 4, the Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) provides funding for the Preschool for All (PFA) program. The long-term goal of the Preschool for All program is to provide educational services to all 3- and 4-year-old children whose families choose to participate. The program focuses on providing high-quality educational programs for children who are determined to be at risk of academic failure. It also provides funding for programs serving families of low to moderate income whose children are not considered to be at risk academically and other families that choose to participate.

Source of definition: Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE), Early Childhood

Preschool for All serves 3- and 4-year-old children (and 5-year-olds who are not yet eligible for kindergarten). Based on legislatively mandated priorities, ISBE awards PFA grants to applicants who propose to serve children, at least 80% of whom are identified as being at risk of academic failure.

The PFA program is made up of seven required components:

  • Screening to determine risk status
  • Educational program
  • Parent education and involvement
  • Community collaboration
  • Staff requirements
  • Professional development
  • Evaluation

For details on these components, and other information related to the Preschool for All program, see Preschool for All (PFA).

Preschool for All/Preschool for All Expansion Implementation Manual, updated May 2022.

Data available on IECAM

Number of sites

The number of sites at which children are served in ISBE PFA programs.

Source of data: Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE); Chicago Public Schools

These data are available by state, county, township, state Senate district, state House district, congressional district, ISBE region, IDHS region, municipality, unit and elementary school district, and Chicago Community Area.

The data are derived from the ISBE, Early Childhood department.

Number of children proposed to be served

The number of children proposed to be served (at any one time) or enrolled in ISBE PFA programs. (See notes below for specific meaning of “number of children.”)

Source of data: Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE); Chicago Public Schools

These data are available by state, county, township, state Senate district, state House district, congressional district, ISBE region, IDHS region, municipality, unit and elementary school district, and Chicago Community Area.

The data are derived from the ISBE, Early Childhood department

The number of children outside Chicago is “proposed capacity.” That is, each PFA program informs ISBE of the number of children it proposes to serve at each site for the year. The number of children within Chicago is actual enrollment, which is what CPS reports to ISBE, and ISBE provides to IECAM.

Note on IECAM data compared with ISBE data: IECAM data represent the number of children proposed to be served (at any one time) in PFA at-risk classrooms (as indicated above). These data are intended to closely approximate capacity to serve children. Children leaving a PFA program and new children entering during the year will further affect the total number of children served across the year as a whole. Thus, the IECAM data are not the same as the official total “number of children served” across the year, which is calculated by ISBE after the close of the school year.

If the total number of children served across the year is required for your purposes, please contact ISBE.

Grantees

Agencies or organizations that have received grants from the Illinois State Board of Education to provide or subcontract the operation of PFA classrooms in their area.

Source of information: Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE)

Geographic region: Grantees may serve single or multicounty area.

Yearly differences in data definitions / descriptions

For past years, there are some differences in the data definition/description, compared with the most recent year. These are indicated here.

For FY2015 and earlier, the data on PFA number of sites and proposed capacity were derived from the following sources:

  • applications for new PFA grants (if any)
  • ISBE’s eGrants database of continuing PFA applications
  • Chicago Public Schools (CPS) file of community-based PFA funded enrollment.

For FY2015 and earlier, the data on proposed capacity for CPS was “number of children proposed to be served” rather than “actual enrollment.”