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April 11, 2012

New Jersey spends an average of $11,669 for each of the 51,207 children enrolled in public pre-K programs for children ages 3 and 4, which placed the state No. 1 in the country for offering pre-K resources to low-income children.

New Jersey spends a total of $597.5 million on three programs aimed at low-income 3 and 4 year olds. The first, and largest, is a program aimed at the Abbott school systems and a few others, which serve 6 percent of the population.

The second program, known as Non-Abbott Early Childhood Program Aid (ECPA) serves 7,411 low-income children in 96 districts. The third program, which all districts are eligible for, provides some subsidies to expand preschool for 4 year olds around the state.

As a result of these programs, 18 percent of preschoolers age 3 and 28 percent age 4 are enrolled in state subsidized preschool programs.

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