On early ed, let’s not lose ground

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Article Author: William Diehl and Desiree Lalbeharie-Josias
Publication Name: Hampshire Gazette
Article Date: 4/8/15
Article URL: www.gazettenet.com/home/16418982-95/william-diehl-desiree-lalbeharie-josias-on-early-ed-lets-not-lose-ground

NORTHAMPTON, MA — As educators working under the banner that “everyone is a learner,” recent guest columns in the Gazette on the vital importance of investing in early education programs drew our attention.

We applaud Gov. Charlie Baker’s proposal to invest an additional $105 million in K-12 schools, and thank Senate President Stanley C. Rosenberg and all Massachusetts legislators who support public education. Because of this support, Massachusetts continues to lead the nation in education.

But much work remains to be done to close the achievement gap, help all children become strong readers and increase high school graduation rates. Additional resources will support these statewide goals, particularly in lower income communities in which school budgets are more dependent on state funds and in rural communities with small school-age populations.

However, cuts to early childhood initiatives undermine these additional investments, just as building a house without a proper foundation endangers the entire structure and increases long-term costs.

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