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About Transitional Kindergarten (TK)

Transitional Kindergarten (TK) is the first of a two-year kindergarten program that is developmentally appropriate and aligned to the Preschool Learning Foundations. TK serves as a bridge between preschool and traditional kindergarten, utilizing a modified kindergarten curriculum taught by a credentialed teacher. 

In 2021, legislation was passed that requires any local educational agency (LEA) operating a Kindergarten to also provide a TK program for all 4-year-old children by 2025–26. Starting in the 2022-23 school year, the average ratio in the classroom is one adult per every 12 students. Additionally, school districts and charter schools must maintain an average transitional kindergarten class enrollment of not more than 24 pupils per classroom for each school site.

Universal TK (UTK) means that by 2025–26, regardless of background, race, zip code, immigration status, or income level, every child will have access to TK as a quality learning experience the year before Kindergarten.


  • To see a visual of the phase-in implementation approach for transitional kindergarten, click here.

  • To learn more about Education Code regarding transitional kindergarten requirements, see EDC 48000.

  • To learn more about local implementation, visit your school district’s website.


TK is a component of the Universal PreKindergarten (UPK) mixed-delivery system. While families may choose care from across this system, local education agencies (LEAs) are mandated to offer TK to all age-eligible children.

What is Universal PreKindergarten?

Universal PreKindergarten (UPK) is an umbrella term that includes the California State Preschool Program (CSPP), TK at the California Department of Education, as well as Head Start, district and local community-based preschool programs, early learning services for students with disabilities, private pay preschool, and expanded learning options to support access to a full day of services.


California’s goal is to serve more children ages 3-years-old to 4-years-old, statewide, in high-quality preschool programs. California intends to meet this goal through the implementation of universally available TK, as well as investments in other state-funded programs, such as funding to expand the CSPP and other state-subsidized programs that offer a preschool learning experience.


LEAs presented UPK Planning & Implementation (UPK P&I) plans to their governing bodies by June 30, 2022. The County Office of Education is charged with supporting LEAs in this implementation, and has also created a countywide plan to guide these efforts.

View VCOE's Countywide plan for Universal
PreKindergarten by clicking the image below.



View the Local Planning Council's Countywide plan for UPK Mixed Delivery by clicking the image below. 



Early Childhood Programs

Alicia McFarland

Toni Isaacs