Mattawa Pre-School (MPS) was a developmental preschool and was established on the District's campus around 2005. They are located by Mattawa Elementary and are housed in 6 portable classrooms. Mattawa Pre-School is an Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP). ECEAP is Washington's pre-kindergarten program that prepares 3- and 4-year-old children for success in school and life. The Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) oversee the program.
Mattawa's Preschool serves migrant children and children from the community. For the 2020-2021 school year, Mattawa Pre-School has 98 students enrolled and has 7 teachers and 9 paraprofessionals. MPS enrollment numbers usually sit at capacity, and many students end up on a waiting list. Unfortunately, due to staff and classroom capacity, MPS cannot enroll all students who would like to register during a school year.
In February, given the classroom and staff urgency, Mattawa Pre-School Director Olga Mendez had the opportunity to apply for the Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP) Expansion Request. The Expansion Request application process consisted of a proposal and budget submission and data showcasing the community's need for expansion. The Request would provide funding for the classroom supplies and furniture.
Mrs. Mendez was notified that MPS received $70,000 for the Expansion Request for the 2020-2021 school year in March. Immediately after receiving the good news, MPS's team began the work. They hired three teachers through ECEAP funding and were able to furnish and purchase classroom supplies fully. Most importantly, the expansion provided 20 more pre-school slots for students to fill.
For students to be enrolled in this school year program, families have to attend a parent orientation. MPS's Family and support specialists Angelina Sosa and Yesenia Martinez played a significant role in completing the new family registration requirements. They went above and beyond to contact families that were on the enrollment waiting list before the deadline.
Mendez states, "Being able to provide services to 20 more students and families was very rewarding. But also makes you want to continue to do work for the rest of the students on the waiting list." WSD is proud of the work that MPs has done for our District and community. To keep up with the Mattawa Pre-School, please visit our website at www.wahluke.net or their Facebook Page @MattawaPreSchool.