Thousands of Colorado families have already applied for UPK. Fill out your application today!

Written by: Children's Campaign
Date Posted: January 20, 2023

Beginning in the 2023-24 school year, Colorado 4-year-olds can receive at least 15 hours per week of free, voluntary preschool through the state’s new Universal Preschool (UPK) Colorado program, administered by the newly created Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC). Eligible 3-year-olds with qualifying factors can also receive 10 free hours per week. Learn more about eligibility at CDEC’s website.  

Nearly 12,000 applicants signed up for UPK on Tuesday, the first day parents could enroll their kids for a fall start. This is an exciting start considering CDEC originally projected approximately 30,000 children would be enrolled in the program’s first year overall. 

Families can begin applications at any time at UPK Colorado is not a first-come, first-served program. All applications submitted by February 14 will be matched together, with additional matching rounds to follow. If you need to make changes to your application, contact your Local Coordinating Organization (LCO). Learn more about how your LCO can help you with your application by visiting  


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About Children's Campaign

The Colorado Children’s Campaign is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy organization committed since 1985 to realizing every chance for every child in Colorado. We advocate for the development and implementation of data-driven public policies that improve child wellbeing in health, education and early childhood. We do this by providing Coloradans with trusted data and research on child wellbeing and organizing an extensive state-wide network of dedicated child advocates. For more information, please visit