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Recent early education news and updates

In the News

House Endorses Stricter Work Rules for Poor

February 14, 2003
Robert Pear

Under the bill, states would get a block grant of $16.5 billion a year, the same as under current law. But more welfare recipients in each state would have to engage in work activities for more hours each week.

Englewood hears where $7M to schools went

February 13, 2003
Christina Joseph

A disagreement over a contract to fund a pre-kindergarten program sparked a closed-door debate during a recent meeting between the City Council and Board of Education.

Head Start officials oppose Bush plan

February 13, 2003 Governance and AccountabilityState & Local
Rob Schneider

Those opposed to the change think the result will be elimination of many services Head Start now provides to poor kids. Head Start officials also worry that the Bush proposal would give states a wider say in pre-school program planning, resulting in an additional layer of bureaucracy.

State Child Care Cuts Could Mean ‘Dramatic’ Local Loss

February 13, 2003
Susan DeFord and Mary Otto

A carefully constructed child care support system that helps working families would be devastated by budget cuts being considered by state lawmakers, advocates say. Proposed cuts for the coming year would reduce child care subsidies, or vouchers, for poor families by $25 million, or nearly 20 percent statewide.

Head Start Plan Worries Supporters

February 12, 2003 Governance and AccountabilityState & Local
Diana Jean Schemo

Administration officials said the change would allow states to coordinate Head Start better with their own preschool programs, and would bolster its educational mission by moving its oversight to the federal Education Department from Health and Human Services. But critics point to studies showing that Head Start is already successful in giving poor children an…

Florida Struggles to Find a Way to Achieve Smaller Classes

February 11, 2003
Dana Canedy

Three months after Florida voters approved a measure to impose the most restrictive limits in the nation on class sizes, legislators, educators and Gov. Jeb Bush are grappling with just how to accomplish it. Governor Bush has called for spending $3 billion a year to meet the mandates, which require the state to cap class…

Poor parents find school intimidating

February 11, 2003
Thomas Moore

It's a myth that these families don't care about education

Editorial: Head Start resists efforts to give pupils a real boost

February 10, 2003

On Chicago’s poverty-stricken West Side, 115 children at the city-funded Hansberry Child-Parent Center receive the same high-quality preschool education typical of many private schools. All [Child-Parent Centers] have strong track records, achieving what the federal Head Start program often fails to do: ensure that 4-year-olds from disadvantaged families get the skills they need to excel…

Opinion: New test won’t aid program

February 10, 2003 Assessment
Sarah Greene

Head Start programs are already using local assessment tools to evaluate the performance of children. Instead of funding a new test, shouldn’t we be trying to provide more low-income children with a program that government studies say is effective in getting them ready to learn?

Column: Finding the truth in a battle over Head Start

February 9, 2003 Governance and AccountabilityState & Local
Jane Eisner

Saying times have changed, Bush wants states to have more control. Critics say this will dumb down the program.