Research has shown time and again that early childhood education is a critical foundation for future academic success for low-income students and students of color.
So it was exciting to see New York lawmakers help expand pre-K access by including a provision in the state budget to grow pre-K seats, especially in low-income districts.
But sufficient funding is just one part of the access problem. The other issue is that some of the public schools best positioned to offer pre-K to high-need families are prevented from doing so.
NYCAN’s latest issue brief, Start Early to Close Gaps: Let Public Charter Schools Help New York Expand Access to Pre-K, explains how public charter schools, which often serve low-income families and families of color, aren’t allowed to operate pre-K programs in New York.
In order to grow pre-K access for all, we must call all public schools on deck, including public charter schools, to operate high-quality pre-K programs.
Because our littlest learners deserve the best shot at a great education, and a great pre-K program is the first step.