Pre-K

Applications Open For Half-Year In 10 Pre-K Expansion Counties

Sep 26, 2017

The state-funded preschool pilot program that began with five counties was expanded during the 2017 legislative session for 15 more counties. Now, parents in 10 of those counties can apply for half-year preschool.

But all low-income families applying will also have to comply with a new program requirement.

A state grant would pay for half or full day preschool for a 4-year-old child beginning next January.

Indiana lags far behind other states in providing families access to state-funded pre-K programs, according to a new study of Indiana’s pre-K offerings. The analysis finds Indiana, the only state that ties a family’s pre-K eligibility to work and education requirements, limits participation for children who may be most in need.

Tippecanoe, Howard Among Pre-K Expansion Counties

Jun 7, 2017

Low-income families in 15 counties will soon be able to use state money to send their 4-year-old children to preschool. Indiana’s first pre-K pilot included five counties – some urban and some rural.

One of the additional counties is Delaware, where Carrie Bale runs the By5 Early Childhood Initiative. She says while she’s glad for the new opportunity, the expansion includes a new requirement that could exclude families that need the service.

The National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) released its 2016 State Preschool Yearbook Wednesday, which shows Indiana’s early childhood education efforts don’t match those of other states, but recent legislation shows improvements in how the state funds preschool.

One of the biggest education bills this session seeks to expand the current pre-K pilot program, but the current version of the bill includes funding a new, home school preschool option.

One part of the bill allocates $1 million per year for digital preschool services for families to use at home.

This Week At The Statehouse: Education Spending, ISTEP+

Apr 7, 2017

Amid uncertainty over the future of many education issues in Indiana, lawmakers were busy at the Statehouse this week.

Lawmakers in the House chambers dove into a controversy around “sanctuary campuses.” The Senate finished the week by placing its stamp on the House budget and two of the session’s most controversial proposals: an appointed superintendent and ISTEP replacement.

Senate Budget Increases Education Spending By 3 Percent

 

Republicans rejected several attempts by Democrats Wednesday to increase pre-k funding as they voted down proposed amendments to the budget.

At the halfway point in the legislative session, the bills passed in the first half, by House or Senate, move on to the other chamber.  So this week, a few education bills that made that cut got their first hearing in the House or Senate education committees.

The House committee only heard two Senate bills this week, one regarding emergency medications in schools and another on 529 savings plans.

Indiana Pre-K Expansion Moves Forward At Statehouse

Feb 28, 2017

Lawmakers voted Tuesday to advance a proposal to expand state-funded preschool in Indiana.

In a 41-9 vote, state senators pushed ahead a two-year, $32 million proposal that would modestly expand state-funded preschool beginning July 2017.

“It is not universal pre-K, there are a finite number of potential 4-year-olds [covered],” says Sen. Travis Holdman (R-Blufton), who authored the bill.

This week marked the last committee meetings of the first half of the session, as both chambers scramble to wrap up any bills they want to move forward into the second half of the session. Monday and Tuesday are the last days both chambers can approve a bill if they want it to move forward. The legislature will then take the rest of the week off and return the following Monday.

Appointed State Superintendent Gets Surprising Vote

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