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Amanda Rock

Where Do You Stand? Government-funded Pre-K

By June 18, 2008

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Results from a national poll recently released by Pre-K Now, a public education and advocacy organization that advances high-quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten for all three and four year olds, found that nearly seven in ten voters want state and local governments to provide voluntary pre-k for all children. The poll also found by nearly a three-to-one margin, voters are more likely to support a Congressional candidate who backs increased funding for pre-k.

The group cites studies that show how high-quality pre-k increases a childís chances of success in both school and life. Furthermore, the group argues, children who attend high-quality pre-k programs are less likely to be held back a grade or to need special education, and they are more likely to graduate from high school. They also have higher earnings as adults and are less likely to become dependent on welfare or involved in crime.

Those against government-funded preschool programs say because these types of programs are expensive and donít necessarily produce the results promised, federal- and state-funded pre-k programs should only focus on those children who are at the greatest risk for poor achievement.

What do you think? Should the federal or state governments fund pre-kindergarten for all children?

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