If your child turns 4 this year, he or she is eligible for free pre-kindergarten, either in a public school or at a site run by a community organization. You may apply between March 16-April 24. The de Blasio administration gets an A for effort in its rapid expansion of pre-kindergarten, with more than 30,000 new seats last fall and another 20,000 planned for this coming fall. But what is the quality of these new programs?

Even though the city is rapidly expanding free all-day pre-k programs, demand still outstrips supply in many neighborhoods. The staff of Insideschools and a panel of experts will tell you how to find a good program for your child and to navigate the application process. Josh Wallack, chief strategy officer of the Department of Education and an expert in early childhood, will be joining the panel.

This free workshop for parents will:

— Explain the difference between "child care" and "pre-kindergarten"

— Help you decide whether to choose pre-k run by public schools or community groups

— Tell you what to look for when you visit such programs

— Detail where the available seats are

— Explain how and when to apply

— Talk about what to do if there's no slot for your child where you want it

— Describe ethnic and racial diversity in pre-k programs

The event will be moderated by Clara Hemphill, interim director, Center for New York City Affairs at the New School.

Admission is free but you must RSVP for the event which will be held at the New School's Theresa Lang Community & Student Center, Arnhold Hall at 55 West 13th Street (between Fifth and Sixth avenues), 2nd Floor from 6-8:30 pm. To RSVP, click the register button

The Insideschools' Lowdown on Pre-k is one in a series of events sponsored by the Center for New York City Affairs at Milano School for International Affairs, Management and Urban Policy examining Mayor Bill de Blasio's performance in key areas impacting New York City during his first year in office. Join our de Blasio series discussions this year using #deblasioseries and follow us @centernyc.