U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Early Learning Libby Doggett will visit three full-day pre-k classrooms at Sugar Hill Museum Preschool in New York City on Tuesday, Sept. 22 to highlight the importance of investment in early learning and how Preschool Development Grant funds are being used to provide access to high-quality preschool in New York.
“New York City is a good place to see how federal investments in Preschool Development Grants and Head Start can work with city and state investments to assure every four-year-old gets a high-quality preschool education,” Doggett said.
Expanding access to high-quality preschool is critically important to ensuring that every child in America has the opportunity for lifelong success. But despite the evidence showing the importance of early learning, House and Senate committees have authored spending bills that eliminate Preschool Development Grants, a program that is in the middle of building and expanding high-quality preschool in over 200 high-need communities across 18 states that span the geographic and political spectrum.
New York was awarded a $25 million for the first year of their four-year Preschool Development Grant and is using the funding to target five geographically diverse communities with high numbers of children who are dual language learners and live in high poverty areas: New York City, Yonkers, Uniondale, Watertown and Port Chester. Through the grants, the state will serve 1912 children in the 2015-2016 school year, including 777 children in New York City. Over the life of the grant the number of children served would reach approximately 10,200 from low-income families by the end of 2018, if funding is not cut. If there is no funding, approximately 5,900 children would not be served in the last two years of their grant.