St. Paul, MN (KROC-AM News) - Governor Mark Dayton has announced that approximately 3300 children have been enrolled in free pre-kindergarten programs that will be offered by 74 Minnesota school districts and charter schools this fall using $25 million in funding approved during the 2016 session of the State Legislature.

While praising the new preschool program, Dayton also called for additional funding to expand the number of Minnesota children with access to free pre-kindergarten education. He notes that 183 school districts and charter schools submitted applications to participate in the new pre-K program, but there was only enough funding to approve about 40-percent of the proposals. If there had been enough funding to approve all of the applications, Dayton says another 6800 children would have the opportunity to enroll in a free preschool program this fall.

State officials say the awarding of funding targeted Minnesota school districts and charter schools that serve high numbers of low-income students and where there may be limited access to other high-quality pre-kindergarten programs.

For 24/7 news and sports check KROC AM and follow KROC-AM on Facebook.