It’s been roughly two centuries since German educator Friedrich Fröbel pioneered the idea that young children were like plants in a garden who would thrive with the proper mental and emotional nurturing. Thus was born the idea of “kindergarten.” Fröbel was born on this date in 1782, so April 21 is now designated as “Kindergarten Day” in his honor.
Since Fröbel’s time, we’ve come to understand how much a child’s brain develops in the critical years before kindergarten. Decades of research has shown that high-quality pre-kindergarten prepares young learners for success in kindergarten and beyond.
Perhaps that’s why a majority of Pennsylvania voters across party lines strongly support increasing the availability of pre-k. Yet only about 1 in 6 of Pennsylvania’s 3- and 4-year-olds benefits from publicly funded, high-quality pre-k. We can do better for our kids and our commonwealth.
Gov. Tom Wolf has proposed increasing investments in high-quality pre-k by $120 million in fiscal 2015-16, including an additional $100 million for Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts and a $20 million funding increase for the Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program (HSSAP). These are strong steps toward ensuring every 3- and 4-year-old in Pennsylvania has access to high-quality pre-k.
You can help ensure these investments happen by joining us in the statewide, nonpartisan Pre-K for PA campaign and letting your elected leaders know you want smart, effective investments to help ensure every child arrives in kindergarten with the strongest possible foundation to learn for a lifetime.
Stay on top of the latest news affecting Pennsylvania's children by following us via social media: