Indiana picks 18 counties as preschool finalists

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - The Indiana Family and Social Services Administration has selected 12 urban and six rural counties as finalists for the five-county preschool pilot grant program created by the General Assembly this year.

The agency announced Wednesday the counties are Allen, Bartholomew, Delaware, Elkhart, Grant, Howard, Jackson, Kosciusko, Lake, Lawrence, Madison, Marion, Noble, St. Joseph, Tippecanoe, Vanderburgh, Vigo and Wayne.

The pilot program provides funding for pre-kindergarten for low-income 4-year-olds in five counties. Families earning up to 127 percent of the federal poverty level - a little less than $30,000 for a family of four - would qualify.

The agency says the finalists represent all geographic regions of the state and have about 17,000 eligible 4-year-olds who are not currently going to preschool.

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