We stand up for a Massachusetts where everyone gets a fair shot, does and pays their fair share, and plays by the same rules.
Below is our media statement on the Senate budget draft which was released this morning.
MASSACHUSETTS FAIR SHARE: “MEANINGFUL PROGRESS” AS MASS. SENATE PROPOSES $7.5 MILLION MORE THAN HOUSE TO SHRINK EARLY EDUCATION WAIT LIST
With tens of thousands of children on wait lists for access to preschool around Massachusetts, the state Senate proposed $17.5 million to expand access, which would put 2,000 more children into classrooms.
Meanwhile, the U.S. Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions advanced a national preschool bill.
BOSTON, MA – Massachusetts Fair Share commended the state Senate Ways and Means committee for increasing the funding for expanded early education access. The group noted that this is another indication, along with the advancement of a national universal preschool plan in the U.S. Senate, that support for early education is growing in Massachusetts and across the country.
“Though too many kids in Massachusetts are left out of preschool classrooms, we’re making meaningful progress. The Senate showed today that it’s time to move forward on early education.” said Nathan Proctor, Massachusetts Fair Share state director. “Everyone should get a fair shot in life and that starts with a quality education. We are pleased that the Senate increased funding for early education, though with 30,000 children stuck on wait lists, much more needs to be done. We’ll continue to push for more funding as the budget moves forward.”
Proctor added that minutes before the state Senate released their budget, the Health Education Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee in the U.S. Senate approved “Strong Start for America’s Children Act,” which would create new state-federal partnerships with the goal of universal preschool. “Every child deserves a strong start. It’s been very encouraging to see lawmakers in Boston and Washington, D.C., advancing early education.” Proctor said.
Sen. Elizabeth Warren is on the HELP committee and voted in favor of the bill.
Over the last 3 months, Massachusetts Fair Share members have sent in more than 2,500 emails to lawmakers calling for expanded investment in early education. Over the last 4 days, Massachusetts Fair Share members had sent in more than 400 emails to state senators calling for an investment of $25 million in expanded access to preschool in the Senate budget, which was proposed by Sen. Daniel Wolf (Harwich). The governor called for an investment of $15 million in shrinking the wait list, and the House passed a $10 million investment.
Massachusetts Fair Share stands for an America where everyone gets their fair share, does their fair share, and pays their fair share; and where everyone plays by the same rules. Find out more at www.MassachusettsFairShare.org