The House Republicans must not have gotten the memo. After 40 years of research, including numerous recent studies that show investment in pre-k to be a sound budgetary decision, the house has proposed to cut funding to 218 thousand Head Start children. While the rest of the nation is fine tuning the Early Learning Challenge Fund, a bill to increase quality and access to pre-k, House Republicans are attempting to renege on their obligation to support families in their own voting districts. This current crew of House Republicans have never seen the persistent but quiet movement for equity in our educational system that is the Head Start family. Each time funding to Head Start is challenged families, directors, teachers, and community partners must stand up to say, “No” you can not steal from our nation’s neediest families. PEW Charitable Trusts described it this way in a recent press release,
“Fiscal health comes from budget discipline and making smart investments in programs that offer strong returns. The research shows early learning programs provide children with a solid foundation for success, which pays dividends for families, school districts and taxpayers—and ultimately improves America’s economic competitiveness.”
Now is that time again. As Miller says in the video below, fight back for Head Start parents who don’t get the same voice as Hedge Fund managers and Big Oil.
Click here to contact your House Representative. My representative is House Majority Leader, Eric Cantor. You should probably contact him also because his role is to set priorities for his party. Tell them you are a member of the Head Start Family
If you want to you can use this paragraph from the CLASP as the basis of your letter. Be sure to sign your name.
Four decades of research confirm that Head Start improves the readiness of poor children, and that children who participate perform better in school and are less likely to repeat a grade or need special education services and have higher graduation rates than their peers. Head Start children outperform their peers on every measure of children’s preschool experiences, including cognitive development and health. Research is also clear that Early Head Start, which reaches infants and toddlers, also works. The program has positive impacts on a wide array of child outcomes, as well as family self-sufficiency and parental support of child development. Children who participate in Early Head Start programs show gains in language and cognitive development, exhibit lower levels of aggressive behavior and more positive interactions with their parents than do children from similar backgrounds who did not participate in Early Head Start.