Article by USA TODAY
Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is opening a string of preschools starting in October.
The tech tycoon announced on Instagram that the first location of a network of free-admission preschools named after himself will open its doors on Oct. 19. The “first of many” Bezos Academy schools to come is in Des Moines, Washington, he said.
And the schools for underserved communities will prioritize kids from low-income families, according to a Bezos-run nonprofit.
“Extra kudos to the team for figuring out how to make this happen even amidst COVID, and to Wesley Homes for stepping up with the facility,” Bezos said on Instagram alongside a photo of a classroom setting with children’s books on a shelf.
The tuition-free schools will operate year-round, according to a flyer Bezos posted.
There’s also an Instagram page dedicated to the project.
The “Montessori-inspired” preschools will operate five days a week and are for children 3-5 years old, according to Bezos’ Day 1 Academies Fund.
The preschool’s selection process includes a wide range of data, including income levels, participation in free and reduced-cost meal programs and gaps in access to licensed childcare providers, according to the non-profit.
“We’ll use the same set of principles that have driven Amazon. Most important among those will be genuine, intense customer obsession. The child will be the customer,” Bezos said.