Early Education in the News
While other Southern states are slicing pre-school funding to cover budget deficits, Louisiana's Cecil J. Picard LA-4 Early Childhood Program is safe — for now.
North Carolina's programs for children younger than age 5 are a national model, said Lt. Gov. Walter Dalton told educators at summit on early childhood education Tuesday.
Lawmakers are considering a measure that would eliminate junior kindergarten in Hawai'i public schools and move up the date children are eligible to enter kindergarten, changes that would require thousands of late-born 5-year-olds to wait an additional year before they can start school. Despite junior-K's problems, educators, parents and early-education advocates say the program is helpful and that the proposed changes will create a burden for parents at a time when they can least afford it.
Alongside the many millions of dollars Virginia is considering shearing off of its support of public schools is a little nick that would have an outsized impact on children's education. The $1.5 million a year the state now puts into the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation is a small investment in a big initiative, a public/private partnership dedicated to making sure youngsters reach school ready to learn.
More than one in 10 children begin primary school unable to learn and unwilling to build relationships with their peers, a "disengaged generation waiting in the wings", said the thinktank Demos today in a report. Researchers said that data from the Millennium Cohort Study showed 66,000 children scored "borderline" or "abnormal" in tests designed to reveal behavioural and emotional problems that are intimately linked to under-achievement at school, risk of truanting, and exclusion.
A bill to require teachers in state pre-kindergarten programs to hold a bachelor's degree by July 2013 has been filed for the third consecutive year by Rep. Janet Long, D-Seminole. A 2008 report by the National Institute for Early Education Research concluded that while Florida is a national leader in providing pre-kindergarten classes, the program falls way behind in quality and spending.
This month the state is celebrating having provided free pre-K to one million youngsters in our state during the past 17 years. Georgia becomes the first state in the nation to serve more than one million pre-K children in a voluntary, universal, lottery-funded program.
Mississippi citizens receive more information about the quality of their hamburger or fried chicken joint than they do about the quality of care for their children. [That] doesn't seem right.
Good science education at the earliest grades is supremely important, but in most classrooms it gets short shrift. Studies have found that children in kindergarten are already forming negative views about science that could cast a shadow across their entire educational careers.
The state Senate passed legislation Tuesday paving the way for pre-kindergarten programs that would serve lower-income children throughout South Dakota. The proposed law establishes a 16-member Early Learning Council appointed by the governor and sets requirements that communities must follow to be eligible to participate.
And [Gov. Charlie] Crist's education spending proposal has called for a $44.8 million increase in the program for 4-year-olds. A 2008 report by the National Institute for Early Education Research concluded that while Florida is a national leader in providing pre-kindergarten classes, the program lags in quality and spending.
A new poll says that 81 percent of Pennsylvania voters support providing early-childhood education to children under age 5, and that 71 percent believe those programs should be state-funded.
Preschool serves several important roles. Although many people assume that it's about giving children a jump-start on learning the alphabet and numbers, the goal is more about exposure than actual learning. It's about putting kids in a language-rich environment. It's about getting kids to problem-solve, even if the problem is as simple as building a block tower.
Stalled efforts to expand statewide access to early education may soon regain momentum, as a growing number of school districts work to cobble together local programs and the governor's Early Education Cabinet returns to action Thursday following a budget-induced hiatus.
Like many preschool programs, District 50's is funded by state grants. Unlike many programs, District 50 has received most of the grant money that is expected from the state.
Reading skills span from pre-kindergarten to the third-grade level. In between are students who work on three-letter words and construct sentences. Some educators say that those gaps in ages and skills are too wide for today's rigorous kindergarten classrooms.
Early-childhood education is not just an education imperative — it needs to be a national security priority. Let me tell you why. Seventy-five percent of young Americans are not qualified to join the military, according to the U.S. Department of Defense. The three primary reasons are inadequate education, criminality and physical unfitness.
Florida's pre-kindergarten program is in financial trouble — facing a nearly $29 million budget shortfall this year and a worse deficit next year. The budget woes are raising fears that a program meant to offer "high quality" preschool classes is on a downward slide.
Countless studies have proven the numerous benefits of this type of early education, including increasing the rates of graduation, helping students perform better on standardized tests, decreasing the rates of crimes perpetrated by youths and reducing the number of special education students.
Gov. Pat Quinn came to Alton on Friday to talk about high-speed rail, but a group of demonstrators had the issue of education funding on their minds. Several parents and children attended the news conference at Alton's Amtrak Station, carrying signs asking for the state to make its payments for early childhood education, which is at risk for elimination in the Alton School District.