Welcome to dese.mo.gov. We hope you enjoy the new and improved website, and we welcome your feedback.

Early Learning

Start Smart Initiative

The Department of Economic Development is now taking applications for the Start Smart Initiative for organizations that are looking to start or expand early childhood education facilities.  The deadline is June 30, 2015.  

FY16 Missouri Preschool Program Invitation for Grant (IFG)

The Missouri Preschool Program (MPP) grant opportunity for FY16 to create or expand high quality early care and education programs for children who are one or two years from kindergarten eligibility is now open.

Now for Later: Investing in Early Learning  Now for Later

High-quality, parenting education and voluntary early childhood education are top priorities for our state. In order to create the best start possible start for Missouri's youngest learners, we must work together now for later. The Now for Later initiative promotes the importance of creating opportunities for high quality early childhood education for all Missouri children. One of the Department's Top 10 by 20 goals is that all children will enter Kindergarten ready for success. High quality early childhood education helps prepare students for success in school. 

Learn more by watching our new early learning video or visit nowforlater.org.