PITTSBURGH, PA (May 12, 2015) Mayor William Peduto released the following statement today on Early Childhood Action Day, in which pre-K and childcare advocates, providers and stakeholders are traveling to the State Capitol to urge lawmakers to invest more in high-quality pre-Kindergarten education.
“I want to join my friends at Early Learning PA, Pre-K for PA, and founding organizations such as the Pittsburgh Association for the Education of Young Children (PAEYC), in supporting today’s call for stronger funding for pre-K in Pennsylvania. The futures of our children and our communities depend on it.
Access to high quality pre-K significantly improves childhood literacy, math and social skills and provides essential building blocks for opportunities later in life. It not only strengthens our kids -- it strengthens our schools and our communities too.
Unfortunately when it comes to offering high-quality pre-K, Pennsylvania still isn’t making progress. A new report out this week from the National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) details where we stand among states offering publicly funded pre-K programs:
Thankfully, Governor Wolf has proposed increasing state funding for high-quality pre-K by $120 million in the coming fiscal year. The Governor's budget increases Pennsylvania's pre-K counts by $100 million, nearly doubling the Commonwealth’s current investment, and adds $20 million in increased funding for the Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program.
This increased investment would mean approximately 14,000 more Pennsylvania 3 and 4 year olds would benefit from this once in a lifetime learning opportunity. This investment would increase access to publicly funded, high-quality pre-K from about 1 in 6 of our 3 and 4 year olds to about 1 in 4.
There is so much more that our state government, backed by Pennsylvania’s network of childhood and education advocates, can do together. I urge Pittsburgh residents to join others from all over the state to demand in one voice that we provide more high-quality pre-K opportunities to our children, and help turn them into the high-functioning citizens of tomorrow.”
Tuesday, May 12, 2015
City of Pittsburgh
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