Pre-K schooling deserves funds



Pre-K schooling deserves funds

The proposal by the state Department of Education and Executive Office on Early Learning to offer free pre-kindergarten classes to children of low-income families helps to address the state’s early education needs (“Pre-K plan comprises 640 students, 30 campuses,” Star-Advertiser, Jan. 10).

However it is only available to a select few, while the current DOE junior kindergarten program serves a far greater number.

Studies have shown that pre-kindergarten offers long-term educational benefits, and therefore the Hawaii State Teachers Association believes that publicly funded, quality pre-kindergarten programs should be universal and available to all Hawaii’s 4-year-old children. This includes placing certified licensed teachers into these programs.

Educating our keiki is everyone’s kuleana. We need to work together to do our part, inside and outside the classroom, to ensure that Hawaii’s children receive the best opportunities to succeed.

Wil Okabe
HSTA president