Starting preschool

Starting preschool marks the beginning of your child's education and is a big moment for children and parents alike. Mutual respect between parents and preschool staff is a prerequisite for the child's well-being and full enjoyment. It is therefore important to immediately establish a solid connection between the preschool and the home.

When will I know if I get a space?

After applying, you will receive a confirmation email stating that your application has been received. Once a space becomes available, you will receive another email with an offer for enrollment. In the meantime, no notifications about the status of your application will be sent, but you can check the status on Vala. Admission to preschools occurs throughout the year, but most spaces are allocated in the spring.

How much does preschool cost? How do I pay?

Preschool fees are paid according to the fee schedule. You pay based on the time your child spends in preschool and a portion of the meal costs. Fees are collected in advance through an online bank invoice. The due date for preschool fees is the 1st of each month, with a deadline 30 days later.

How does preschool adaptation work?

  • The first days of a child in preschool are called adaptation. Adaptation processes vary among preschools, but parents usually play a key role in their child's adaptation.
  • Some preschools hold larger orientation meetings for parents when the children's preschool attendance begins. Other preschools offer individual meetings, and some offer both orientation and individual meetings.
  • At these meetings, parents are introduced to the program and various topics are discussed. This also provides an opportunity for parents to ask questions and discuss what they think is important for the preschool to know about their child, such as temperament, diet, interests, family structure, native language, and more.
  • Sometimes only one child is in adaptation in a group, but often a group of children is admitted to preschool at the same time. Typically, adaptation begins with a short visit to the preschool on the first day, and the duration increases day by day. The level of parental involvement during adaptation varies among preschools, but parents should plan on being present at least initially. If possible, it's also a good idea to arrange for more flexibility in your work schedule at first, as you may need to pick up your child with short notice, depending on how the adaptation process goes.

What do I need to bring to preschool?

  • When your child starts preschool, it's a good idea to discuss with the staff what is necessary to bring to school – extra clothes, outdoor clothing, and shoes suitable for Icelandic weather, diapers, wet wipes, and more.
  • In preschool, children receive breakfast, lunch, and afternoon snacks. So, they usually don't need to bring their own food. If a child cannot eat a certain type of food due to intolerance, allergies, or religious reasons, it's essential to inform preschool staff.
  • When signing the preschool stay agreement, parents confirm with the principal which meals are included in the preschool fees.

Who is Vala?

The City of Reykjavík uses the preschool system Vala to manage various aspects related to your child's stay. You can log in to Vala through an app or a browser using an electronic ID or an Íslykill. Once your child starts preschool, you can easily report absences and send messages to the preschool through the Vala app. The preschool can also use it to record attendance, schedules, menus, daily progress, and much more.

How can we help?

Do you need further assistance or didn't find what you were looking for? The City Service Center can help you by phone at 411 1111, via live chat, and through email at