Thursday, December 4, 2008

Early childhood education

Consensus is good. Quakers use it So does the League of Women Voters.

Tonight's LWV meeting featured my favorite soup, cooked with a few adjustments for the vegetarians in our group. And we discussed early childhood education and the state's role in it. Rather, the role the state should have in it.

But money is tight, tight, tight So we will probably not see more funding for early childhood education for years to come. So kids of the well-to-do will thrive, and the neediest of the poor kids will get charity (state support). But the kids in the middle may get good care, maybe not. And maybe the kids that don't will be not quite needy enough to be special needs, but are needy enough to have trouble in school and later in life.

League's state study showed that kids who were in an early childhood education program fared better than those who didn't across a number of variables--succeeding in school, making more than $20k/year, completing college, refraining from getting arrested or incarcerated.

Which costs us taxpayers less--$8-12K/year for 5 years, or having a kid grow up to fill a bed in a prison for 5-20 years? So we taxpayers will moan about paying more for gas, food, and education but never mind what we pay for more jails and prisons.

I want to pay more taxes. Sounds perverse, even un-American. But that's my truth. I wantot invest in a green infrastructure for the future, in children, in public health.

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