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Many States Moving Ahead With Push for Gov. Funded Pre-Schools

By Nigel Boys

A topic currently on the lips of many governors and mayors at the moment, which might even get most politicians to agree with one another, is the push for more preschool programs to help further educate the next generation.

Even President Obama has gotten in on the discussion of the need for more government preschool education, when he mentioned it during the State of the Union address.

President Obama even called for an increase in tobacco tax to help generate the $75 billion he hoped Congress would give to invest in preschool programs for the next 10 years, but of course this was sternly opposed by Republicans who don’t exactly think he is the right man for the job.

However, Republicans outside of Congress, including quite a few governors, are starting to see the benefits of funding public school education at the preschool level. Of course that could be because women and minority groups are supporting more preschool programs and the politicians need their votes.

Ron Haskins, co-director of the Center on Children and Families, said that “If you cast it as an issue of inequality, Republicans get their back up right away, but there’s a sincere and growing concern on the part of a lot of Republicans about how to increase economic opportunity.”

Reportedly, 60% of those who favor the Republican Party and 84% of those who support the Democrats said that they would support raising federal tobacco taxes in order to gain funding for much needed improvement in public preschools, according to a telephone poll by First Five Years Fund, an organization supporting early childhood education.

Politicians, mothers and minority groups are not the only ones interested in raising the level of public preschool education. Several law enforcement groups and businesses are starting to lobby politicians for more preschool funding.

These groups believe that it is cheaper to educate the future workforce at an early age, rather than starting later, and it might possibly lessen the number of future criminals.

Several ideas have been thrown around as to how to fund public preschool programs. The ideas range from increasing income taxes on the rich, an idea New York Mayor, Bill de Blasio came up with, to using revenue gained from casinos, as lawmakers in Maine favor.

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