A fleet of little buses brings preschool education to three-, four- and five-year-old Latino children in Colorado’s Roaring Fork Valley, renowned for its world-class ski resorts. Run by Valley Settlement, which delivers free early childhood and family engagement programs to the immigrant families who work at the resorts, El Busesito preschool’s four buses travel to five neighborhoods, providing bilingual preschool education for nearly 100 children. Launched in 2011 after conversations with more than 250 low-wage immigrant families, Valley Settlement now has six programs that serve children and families. In 2017, Valley Settlement launched a 24-month training and home visiting program for the informal ‘family, friend and neighbor’ (FFN) providers who serve families who work non-traditional hours at Aspen resorts. In the fall of 2023, when Colorado’s free, universal preschool initiative launches, El Busesito will double the number of hours available and with federal funding will bring its fleet to eight.

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