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Do you think that the state should fund pre-kindergarten programs?

Asked at Java Break on September 29, 2004

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Photo of Mary King

“Yes. I definitely think they should. I’m going to school to be an elementary school teacher, and I don’t think that there is enough focus on kids’ education before they start school.”

Photo of J.J. McAllister

“Yeah, I do think it’s a good idea. I guess it used to be up to the parents to provide pre-kindergarten education. At such a young age there is so much room for development, every child should have that opportunity.”

Photo of Jessie Mantia

“I would say no. We have so many money problems with education right now. I don’t think the state should have to fund it”

Photo of Kim Williams

“Absolutely. Many parents cannot afford to send their kids to a pre-kindergarten program.”


Adam 11 years, 2 months ago

I think we should fund the programs that we've already got before we worry about funding new ones

Richard Heckler 11 years, 2 months ago

Don't expect much help from a Bush's not there in spite of election year rhetoric


With the election looming, George W is back to claiming that he's a "compassionate conservative" ð and as evidence he cites his centerpiece education law, the No Child Left Behind Act.

This is supposed to be a "tough love" reform, compelling all public school kids to pass standardized tests. If the kids fail the federal government's strict tests, they'll be held back, and their schools can lose federal funding and be replaced by corporate-run chain schools.

But instead of tough love, Bush's law actually is a "tough luck" scam, for he has callously refused to fund the reform part. To get congress to approve the law he had agreed to put up tax dollars for smaller classes, special teachers, tutors, educational equipment, and other resources needed for schools to improve the ability of our kids to learn and pass Bush's tests.

He reneged. In this year's presidential budget proposal, George shorts his own No Child Left Behind reform by nine billion bucks! That's on top of $17 billion he withheld in his previous two budgets. In fact, this spring, Bush offered more of our tax dollars in the form a bribe to try to get the government of Turkey to send some troops to Iraq than he has offered to America's school districts to implement his federally-mandated education laws.

By so severely shortchanging our public schools, the Bush people can advance their ideological agenda of school privatization. As more and more schools lack the resources to achieve the passing rates required on the mandated tests, a little-known provision in George's law will kick in ð one that encourages states to privatize schools that fail his testing system.

Lest you assume that private schools will be better ð thus more compassionate ð recent data from Bush's own education department now reveals that children in such schools are doing worse academically than are those in our public system. George's "reform" is not about compassion, it's about profits.

"Bad News on the Charter Front," New York Times, August 18, 2004. "Effort by Bush On Education Hits Obstacles, New York Times, August 18, 2004. "A National Task: Why high-quality public education is the democratic challenge of our time," American Prospect,

laser_gun 11 years, 2 months ago

Merrill - do you honestly believe that load of horse crap? Bush is anti-education, anti-healthcare, and wants to take all of the veterans money, right?? You liberals can barely keep your head above water! These attacks do not work, just look at the latest polls (and tell your presidential candidate to stop using that orange tanning stuff, its silly looking).

No, the government should not provide pre-kindergarten education, they should take the child immediately from the mother at birth, provide everything for them, and allow the mother to visit occasionally.

Of course I'm joking, but where does parental responsibility begin. Parents should rear children, not the government.

bigcat 11 years, 2 months ago

Of course there is a funding crisis in education. The only problem is that when we put money into education it will give us a definite payback. Many times we gamble with money, put it into this or that. If we put money into education we are spending money on our future. We can sit and blame parents, and I do for a lot, but the earlier we can put a child into education the higher the learning and the more productive the child. It is a widely known fact that the earlier we start teaching a child the more intelligent that child becomes. Even so far as teaching an infant sign language at 5 months has been proven to improve their IQ. I would much rather have the taxpayers pay for early childhood education then waste countless hours teaching 2nd graders the alphabet or how to write their name (and trust me it does happen), when they could be teaching a lot higher level of thinking. We need to stop blaming government and start blaming ourselves. The only reason education is in such financial distress is that our legislators are afraid to raise taxes for fear that they won't get our vote in the next election. Forget Democrat, Republican, Independent, or whatever party you are with, we need to let the government know it is alright to raise taxes as long as there is a guarantee it will go to education.

mrcairo 11 years, 2 months ago

You can pay a little now or a whole lot more later.

Providing quality education is pennies on the dollar compared to unemployment, criminal activity, and under employment.

Yes, the State can afford it. All you have to do is start cutting entitlements to those who don't need it, mostly rich politicians who live a wealthy life off the backs of taxpayers.

Politics defined from the Greek Poly, or many, and from Tics, meaning Blood Sucking Varmits.

jonas 11 years, 2 months ago

I don't suppose any of the screaming chorus would care to factually debunk Merrill's assertion, other than just calling it wrong or stupid or liberal brainwashing, would they?

Anyone? Anyone?

jonas 11 years, 2 months ago

Consumer1: Thanks again, and back at ya. Us realists have to stick together, desu ne? (right?) I've always felt that to stick too hard to dogma and accepted party/ideology line "truths" is to fatally blind oneself. From the look of your line of posts (I went over most of them a minute ago to verify my assumption) is that you seem to have that idea as well.

At any rate, I made most of my mistakes as a forum newbie last fall in 2003.

If you want a topical laugh, check this site out.

jonas 11 years, 2 months ago

Consumer1: Well, I felt like doing it myself, so I went to, and it turns out that funding for education if up 58% from the previous administration. I disagree completely with the very concept of NCLB, but it seems fairly clear that it is being funded adequately, at least at the federal level. If the states are diverting funds to other sources, then that's not the fault of the feds. As far as the conspiracy of privatization, well. . . I can understand your reticence in trying to debunk it, as the whole point of conspiracies is their unproveability (sp?) in the first place. (At least the good ones)

The point I was merely trying to make, which I think you caught on to, was that I see it as best to avoid simply stating "It's wrong," or "you're brainwashed," without any collaberating evidence, as it does nothing to actually solve the argument, fallacious or factual.

Can't argue with the idea that its cheap to let other people do the opinionizing for you, though. Cut and paste mentality irritates me to no end. Thanks, at any rate, for the compliments.

Hoof hearted: jonas says "Just say NO to trolls!"

The phrase dump Kerry is starting to creep up on Mr. Cairo's car (D) (R) analogy as the most overused, weak tagline on the forum. He dropped his, do you have the courage to drop yours, too?

JazzEgle 11 years, 2 months ago

The idea of help for lower income families is a great one. Maybe a voucher system or making the cost tax deductable for the lowest income tax bracket. I also agree with the point that kids are better prepared after preschool. (That's what its for) However, we need to find the money first. This should be a much lesser issue. We need to first balance the state budget before adding any more expenses.

Richard Heckler 11 years, 2 months ago

Many keep saying that we don't need more money for USD 497. How does anyone know we don't? We pay some of the lowest salaries in the state,teachers buy supplies with their own money and are required to update themselves at their expense.

There have been the same implications about too much administration. Prove it to me please. Perhaps some ought to present their case to the school board.

What is a fair salary for a teacher considering all of the hours they put in? Most individuals want additional revenue for classrooms, teacher salaries, supplies and benefits. These are tax dollars that come back to the communities which help support other jobs. Meanwhile our children are given direction toward becoming productive citizens as well as ,entrepreneurs,scientists,doctors,horticulturists,lawyers, architects,engineers,artists,nurses etc,etc,etc. Money well spent.

The feds have not funded NCLB adequately which means states pick up the remaining cost of the federal mandate. On average the feds come through with about 18% of the costs for federal mandates. Learned this fact from a school funding seminar. NCLB is a very expensive mandate.

Pres. Bush has in fact discussed privatization and vouchers with the likes of the Walton family and other very conservative individuals and organizations. Neither vouchers nor privatization will do anything better than public schools and will certainly not save tax dollars...the taxpayers foot the bill in any case. A Wal-Mart private elementary school in every neighborhood while the taxpayers provide a little more corporate welfare. Plenty of talk on google regarding vouchers and privatization.

mdecoste 11 years, 2 months ago

The government does fund some pre-kindegarden programs such as Head Start, and research has shown that these children do much better in school. Both of my own children went to pre-school, and both of them did well. One of them attended Head Start and the other on attended the Early Intervention program at KU. The earlier a child begins learning and any special needs that a child may have can be identified, the earlier that child can get the education that will make them a responsible contributing member of society. In the long run, paying for school makes more sense than paying for prisons.

bigcat 11 years, 2 months ago

God you are morons. I got an idea; let's just build more jails, because with the lack of education they are going to be filling up fast. It is amazing to me how you can just sit there idling by when the shear number of bad parents are increasing hence lowering our educational system. It seems to me that with all you pro NCLB'ers you don't mind the dumbing down of classrooms. Or when my daughter is in kindergarten and they are learning to write their names and know the alphabet when she has known how to do that since she was 2 1/2 . For those who back NCLB you must have below average children, because that is what it is made for. It seems that your children may have needed that preschool more then anyone. How do you say it..... Oh yes Hypocrites!!! As far as USD 497, I have known many teachers either resign or never take a position there due to the terrible pay and no backing at the administrative level.
My 2 cents, now let the liberal bashing commence.

Savage 11 years, 2 months ago

Sure... As long as there is no political indocrination allowed for the little tykes. No dem brainwashing that is. Other than that, its a good idea.

Savage 11 years, 2 months ago

Perhaps the program should be made available to lower income families. I remember finding out that alot of kids who excelled in school were simply the products of superior young training.

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