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Early childhood education advocates say survey support goals

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Author: 
Sentell, Will
Publication Date: 
22 Apr 2019
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A poll done for advocates of early childhood education said 62 percent of those contacted support additional state spending for the services as a way to help working class families, officials said Monday.

The survey was done for the Louisiana Policy Institute for Children, which is the top advocate for more spending, especially for children from birth to age 3.

The poll included 600 respondents, was done in March and has a margin of error of plus or minus four percentage points.

The survey showed that 81 percent of those contacted believe government should play a role in providing child care, 53 percent said they prefer that all children, not just those from low-income families, have access to the assistance and 53 percent said the cost of services and a lack of quality teachers are the biggest obstacles to getting assistance.

The state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education and a new state panel have asked the Legislature to provide $86 million in new state aid this year, in part to eliminate a waiting list of 5,500 families seeking services under the Child Care and Assistance Program.

CCAP helps low-income families to defray the costs of child care while they work or attend school.

The federal government is providing nearly 90 percent of the $468 million spent annually for early childhood education in Louisiana.

Melanie Bronfin, director of the group, said the survey shows voters are behind the push in the Legislature for more spending on early childhood education.

"This research shows voters not only agree with this strategy but demand more help in these programs now," Bronfin said in a statement.

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Entered Date: 
24 Apr 2019
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