President Obama shows support for high quality early education in new budget
Posted on 03.05.2014, Wednesday

President Obama released his budget proposal for FY 2015 yesterday and reaffirmed his commitment to expanding high quality early education for all young children. The proposed budget calls for additional investments in birth to five programs across the Department of Health and Human Services and the Department of Education, including child care, home visiting, Head Start and Early Head Start, and pre-kindergarten.

The budget includes investments and initiatives to improve all levels of education, from early childhood education through college, as well as new efforts to ensure our workforce has the skills needed by American businesses. One of the priorities outlined by the President is “to build a foundation for success in the formative years of life,” and the budget proposes the following steps to achieve that goal:

  • Supports a Preschool for All initiative, in partnership with the States, to provide all low- and moderate-income four-year-olds with access to high-quality preschool, while encouraging States to expand those programs to reach additional children from middle-class families and establish full-day kindergarten policies.
  • Extends and expands evidence-based, voluntary home visiting programs, which enable nurses, social workers, and other professionals to connect families to services and educational supports.
  • Provides access to high-quality infant and toddler care to a total of more than 100,000 children through Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships, and supports Head Start grantees who are expanding program duration and investing in teacher quality, through additional funding in the Opportunity, Growth, and Security Initiative.
  • Makes a substantial commitment to both maintain the number of children served by the Child Care Development Fund and improve the quality of care, with sufficient mandatory funding to support more than 1.4 million children for a full ten years while investing in significant quality improvements.
  • Increases support for early intervention services for infants and toddlers and their families through the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act.

The President’s proposal is the first step in the annual budget and appropriations process, and it is our hope that Congress will follow suit in supporting our young children. We know that when we invest in early childhood, we create the best possible outcomes in education, health and economic prosperity. Supporting healthy learning and development for young children and families is not a partisan issue, and it is encouraging to see these issues named as a national priority for investment.

To read more about how the proposed budget effects children and youth, please click here.

To view the President’s proposed budget in full, please click here.


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