Morning Call: Letter to the Editor: Fully Fund Pre-k Programs in PA
August 16, 2018

As an educator, I often am forced to battle in my gut between what children should have access to and what they can have access to.

Of this I’m certain: Pre-K education is a valuable experience all Pennsylvania children should have access to for its proven social, emotional and developmental benefits.

I’m not alone. When it comes to the benefits of high-quality pre-K, 94 percent of Pennsylvanians agree that it is necessary for children to learn the appropriate behaviors and social skills to succeed in school. I’m writing to encourage the governor and Legislature to fully fund pre-K.

Our leaders in Harrisburg deserve recognition — they prioritized pre-K in the 2018-19 state budget by growing high-quality pre-K funding by 11 percent compared to the full budget, which grew by just 1.7 percent. This is wise investing and good politics.

The $25 million investment in pre-K programs in the 2018-19 state budget will help thousands of kids access high-quality pre-K, but how can they limit funding to some?

Next year, let’s set a course to ramp up our investment because, as we know, the tens of thousands of kids missing out won’t get a do-over.

Elcira Garcia

Read the letter to the editor here.