Wendover Housing Partners and Bezos Academy Announce Partnership to Bring Tuition-Free Preschool Education to Catchlight Crossings

Bezos Academy to open Montessori-inspired preschool that will be located within the new affordable housing community, part of Universal’s Housing for Tomorrow initiative

ORLANDO, Fla., Oct. 04, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Wendover Housing Partners today announces it has signed a ten-year lease agreement with Bezos Academy to open a tuition-free, Montessori-inspired preschool that will be a part of the future Catchlight Crossings multi-family affordable housing community – the cornerstone of Universal Parks & Resorts’ Housing for Tomorrow initiative.

Housing for Tomorrow is Universal’s first-of-its-kind approach designed to help create an innovative solution to address Orlando’s critical need for affordable housing by creating inclusive, economically diverse housing options. Universal pledged 20 acres of prime land in the heart of Orlando’s tourist corridor to be used for 1,000 units of affordable/mixed-income multi-family housing. After conducting a national search, Universal selected Wendover to develop and manage the community and bring the vision for Catchlight Crossings to life.  

Catchlight Crossings is a true affordable, inclusive housing community that will provide economically-diverse housing options to Central Florida residents. The community will be open to anyone who meets the income requirements set forth by the United States Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD).

Catchlight Crossings sets a new vision for what affordable housing can be; a community built to enhance the lifestyle of its residents. This includes a wide range of on-site services – like Bezos Academy’s tuition-free preschool – that will put residents first.

The Bezos Academy preschool will be located on-site within the Catchlight Crossings community. The school, Bezos Academy Orlando – Destination Parkway, will feature five classrooms, accommodate up to 100 children, and will follow a full-day, year-round schedule, and will be open the same time residents move into Catchlight Crossings. This will be the fourth Bezos Academy school located in Central Florida.

“In developing Catchlight Crossings, we wanted to think through all aspects of residents’ lives, and that includes early childhood education,” said Jonathan L. Wolf, founder and CEO of Wendover Housing Partners. “By partnering with Bezos Academy, we are proud to offer free preschool education in addition to an affordable place to live. This community goes far beyond affordable housing, it’s about really improving the quality of life for Central Florida residents.”

“We look for partners who help us go above and beyond meeting the educational needs of the child,” said Mike George, President of Bezos Academy. “That is why we are so excited to be a part of Wendover Housing Partners’ and Universal Parks and Resorts’ plan to provide affordable housing with wrap-around services for its employees and the surrounding community.”

Families earning up to 400% of the federal poverty level with children aged 3-4 years old are eligible to apply. This means that, for a family of four, the annual household income can be up to $111,000 to qualify.

Updates to the opening date will be shared here.

More information and an application to the lottery-based selection process will be posted at www.bezosacademy.org once the school opening date is set.

For more information on Wendover, visit www.wendovergroup.com

For more information on Housing for Tomorrow, visit housingfortomorrow.com.

For more information on Bezos Academy, visit www.bezosacademy.org

About Wendover Housing Partners 
Headquartered in Altamonte Springs, Wendover Housing Partners, LLC is a privately held real estate development, investment and management company founded in 1995. As one of the Southeast’s premier housing companies, Wendover specializes in the development of single and multi-family homes, apartment communities, senior communities, and transit-oriented development. Wendover’s expansive portfolio of affordable and mixed-income developments demonstrates the company’s success in creating housing opportunities in a variety of economically and socially diverse neighborhoods.   

About Universal Parks & Resorts 
Universal Parks & Resorts, a unit of Comcast NBCUniversal, offers guests around the globe today’s most relevant and popular entertainment experiences. With three-time Academy Award winner Steven Spielberg as creative consultant, its theme parks are known for immersive experiences that feature some of the world’s most thrilling and technologically advanced film- and television-based attractions. Universal Parks & Resorts in the U.S. are Universal Studios Hollywood, which includes Universal CityWalk Hollywood; and Universal Orlando Resort, a destination resort with three theme parks (Universal Studios Florida, Universal’s Islands of Adventure and Universal’s Volcano Bay water theme park), eight resort hotels, and Universal CityWalk Orlando. Around the world, UP&R includes Universal Studios Japan in Osaka, a license agreement with Universal Studios Singapore at Resorts World Sentosa, and a theme park destination being developed in Beijing called Universal Beijing Resort. 

About Housing for Tomorrow
Founded in 2020 with the mission to bring more diverse, affordable housing options to Central Florida, Housing for Tomorrow is an innovative, private-industry based solution to one of the area’s most pressing issues. Universal Parks & Resorts pledged 20 acres of land for the creation of a 1,000-unit affordable/mixed-income housing community. As a not-for-profit entity, Housing for Tomorrow will retain ownership of the land, serve as Master Developer, and ensure that the effort will provide housing for low- and moderate-income residents in perpetuity. The community will be built and managed by Wendover Housing Partners, a leader in affordable housing solutions. For more information on Housing for Tomorrow, visit: https://housingfortomorrow.com/.

About Bezos Academy  
Bezos Academy is a non-profit organization that is building a network of tuition-free preschools. Our preschools offer year-round, full-day programming, five days a week, for children ages 3-5 years old from low-income families. Bezos Academy also provides students with all necessary educational supplies and services to set each student up for success, including Montessori materials, books, arts and crafts, field trips, and meals. For more information, visit: www.bezosacademy.org.  

Brianna Edwards
Uproar PR for Wendover Housing Partners 

Katie Ford
Head of Communications for Bezos Academy
W: 206-705-7834