Philadelphia, PA – While Pennsylvania’s high school seniors are proudly standing with their classmates and teachers this month as they accept their diplomas, superintendents and school boards across the commonwealth are expressing their support for Pre-K for PA’s goal of ensuring access to high-quality pre-k for every 3- and 4-year-old.
Since the campaign launched just a few months ago, more than two dozen of Pennsylvania’s school superintendents signed an open letter calling for investment in high-quality pre-k and seventeen school boards have passed resolutions sending the same message to policymakers in Harrisburg. This growing number of “Supers for Pre-K” are joining the more than340 supporting organizations and 5,500 Pennsylvanians that support Pre-K for PA – and is yet another example of the vast and diverse bipartisan support for this issue.
“Considering all of the benefits of quality early learning opportunities – particularly when it comes to preparation for school – ensuring access to high-quality pre-k for all children should be a state budget policy priority,” said Dr. Natalie Thomas, Superintendent of the School District of Cheltenham Township. “As I see day in and day out, if all children have the same chance to attend a quality early learning program, we can ensure they will be ready for kindergarten, future academic achievement and lifelong success.”
Superintendents see firsthand every day what decades of research supports –that a high-quality K-12 education starts with high-quality pre-k – which greatly increases the likelihood of high school graduation and college enrollment, in turn leading to stronger employment opportunities and increased lifetime earning potential. They also know that enrollment in quality pre-k can cut special education placements by nearly half through 2nd grade and reduce grade repetition by as much as a third through 8th grade – therefore significantly reducing the costs associated with remediation and special education for school districts.
Pre-K for PA is an issue campaign supported by individuals and organizations across Pennsylvania who believe that investing in our children is the right choice and an urgent necessity. Our vision is that every 3- and 4-year-old in Pennsylvania will have access to high-quality pre-k. We will not endorse nor oppose candidates, but rather we will advocate on behalf of this vision for Pennsylvania’s children, schools and communities.