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The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences is the recipient of a federal Preschool Development Grant to provide children with their best start in education. Research has shown that children who are well-prepared for school have better focus for learning and experience greater success in school and throughout life. A quality preschool experience can be the difference your child needs.

The Volcano School of Arts & Science’s PreK program is place-based, incorporating Volcano’s unique natural environment and Hawaii’s rich cultural wisdom, language and teachings.  The VSAS PreK curriculum provides opportunities for each child’s creativity and innate problem-solving skills to blossom as children use their natural curiosity to investigate and explore their environment.  In the VSAS PreK classroom, children have the opportunity to work and play collaboratively as well as alone. Children show what they know through many forms of expression: They can draw, paint, build, sing, dance, move, pretend play, play music, and act.


Children find meaning and joy through play.  VSAS’ rich, developmentally appropriate, play-based curriculum is inspired by the progressive educational tradition of Reggio Emilia.  We believe that children are not empty vessels waiting to be filled with adult-given knowledge, but are instead, constructors of their own learning and experience.  The teacher’s role in such an environment is to facilitate, guide, observe, support, and inspire students. This principle of “constructivism” is characterized by a deep engagement with the child at every level from the thoughtful design of space and culturally relevant curriculum, the pacing and flow of the child’s day, the availability of high quality and mesmerizing materials, and above all, the quality of a child’s relationships with self and others.


Language development, critical thinking, motor skills, and pre-literacy are all supported and nurtured throughout each and every day.  During the course of the day, children have the opportunity to explore a variety of learning spaces for investigations into the nature world, Hawaiian language, storytelling, artistic expression, engineering, mathematical reasoning, and music. Conversation and research are key elements of the school day, as students and teachers dig deeper into each child’s ideas and interests.


In the VSAS PreK, parents are integral and active partners in their child’s learning. Through a strong family engagement component, families build on their skills as their child’s first teacher and play a vital role in their child's education. The goal of the VSAS PreK program is to build on a childʻs existing skills and to strengthen the family’s ability to support their child’s learning. It is our belief that together, we can set our children up for life-long success!

Note:  All PreK students will qualify for free breakfast and lunch under the USDA’s Community-Eligibility Provision. No bus transportation will be available for PreK students at this time.  

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School-Year 2019-2020

The Volcano School of Arts & Sciences Pre-Kindergarten Program began in school-year 17-18 as part of the federal Preschool Development Grant that funded 18 PreK programs in 11 charter schools. School-year 2018-2019 marks the final year of the federal grant program. State legislation to provide sustainability funding for the 18 PreK programs has been proposed in HB 996 for the 2019 legislative session. 

Please support HB 996 to maintain and continue the current federally funded charter school Pre-Kindergarten classrooms including VSAS Preschool. Login to to support and submit testimony and contact your legislators. Legislative session ends the first week of May. After that time, we will be able to confirm whether or not our PreK will remain open. 

If funded, the PreK programs will continue to be administered by the State Public Charter School Commission (SPCSC). Enrollment and program requirements will be determined by SPCSC. Proposed requirements currently in consideration are as follows:

Enrollment Priority #1 - 4 year olds from families who fall within 300% of the federal poverty level

Enrollment Priority #2 - any 4 year old

Enrollment Priority #3 - any 3 year old

With sliding-scale fee of $100-$300 per month

VSAS program is currently capped at 12 students based on the square footage of the classroom. The program is planned for expansion to 18 students after construction of new facilities is completed. 

If state legislation is not passed, VSAS will consider a fee-based program if there is sufficient interest. Costs are estimated at $100-$300 per week per child. VSAS is committed to early childhood education. We hope to be able to offer a birth to 4-year-old program within the next five years pending availability of funding and facilities. 

For updates on HB 996 to provide state funding to continue the VSAS PreK, please visit For updates on program requirements, please visit this page. 

To enroll, email to receive an enrollment packet. If there are more applicants than space available, VSAS will conduct a lottery (as required by state law). Applications must be received by March 31, 2019 to be included in the lottery. The lottery will be held on April 3, 2019 at 2:30 pm at the main campus. Applying families are welcome to attend, but it is not necessary to be present for the lottery to be offered a space. 

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