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ST. LOUIS – The Saint Louis Zoo is now accepting applications for its new half-day preschool program, which will begin in September.

Science and animal themes will be integrated into the fee-based school for children between the ages of three and five. Eighteen students will be in each class, with a student-teacher ratio of one teacher for every six students.

Classes will be held at the new Monsanto Education Gallery in the Saint Louis Zoo's The Living World building from 9 a.m. until 12 p.m. each school day between September and May.

Children ages three and four will attend Tuesday and Thursday mornings. Monthly tuition for these students will be $600 per month. Kids ages four and five will attend Monday, Wednesday, and Friday mornings. Monthly tuition for these students will be $900 per month.

Sliding scale tuition rates will be available so families with a range of incomes can participate. Discounts will range from 30 to 80 percent, and based on need. An independent agency will process financial aid applications.

Applications are due by March 30, 2014 and are available online. Parents or guardians of qualified applicants will be required to be interviewed by staff to be eligible for admission.

For more information on the preschool program and application process, visit the Saint Louis Zoo's website.