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Early Learning Center

Orcutt Union School District Early Learning Center Preschool

The Early Learning Center (ELC) is located at 255 Winter Road, Santa Maria, CA on the campus of Joe Nightingale Elementary School. The Center is part of the California State Preschool Program and is licensed by the California Department of Social Services. The ELC offers a free half-day program for four and three year old children from low to moderate income families. Currently, our two sessions are held from 8:30 AM – 11:30 AM and 12:00 PM – 3:00 PM, Monday through Friday, following the Orcutt Union School District calendar.

Young children learn best through play. We use this core belief to create a thematic curriculum that is rich in play, art, science, math, music, and literature. Our program supports each child as they grow and mature in the four domains: intellect, social, emotional, and physical.

Another important component of our program is our collaboration with the Santa Barbara County Office of Education to provide early intervention and screening for students in need.

Parents are teachers too! Parent participation is very important to our program. The three hours of volunteer time in your student’s class, once every two weeks, will have a great impact on your child’s success. You will help in the classroom and also learn techniques to increase your skills as your child’s most important and influential teacher.


Please check the Income Guidelines to see if your family qualifies.  Amounts listed on the income guidelines page are gross dollars, before taxes.


If you believe you qualify and would like to have your child placed on the wait list, please email Leticia Velasco


Please include:

  • Your student’s name
  • Your student’s date of birth
  • Your name
  • Name of any other working adults in your household
  • Your address
  • Your phone number
  • The total number of people in your household (adults and children)
  • Your estimated gross monthly income


Students are placed based on age (four-year-old students first) and income ranking. 


Fun With Bunnies

Fun with Bunnies

Income Guidelines

Dollar amounts shown below are used to determine family need based on family size. All amounts are gross (income before taxes, etc., are deducted).


The following table reflects changes beginning July 1, 2023.

  • Family Size Family Monthly Income Family Yearly Income
    1-2 $7,209 $86,514
    3 $8,154 $97,843
    4 $9,441 $113,292
    5 $10,952 $131,419
    6 $12,462 $149,546
    7 $12,745 $152,944
    8 $13,029 $156,343
    9 $13,312 $159,742
    10 $13,595 $163,141
    11 $13,878 $166,539
    12 $14,162 $169,938