Arkansas could do more in pre-K, but .... | Arkansas Blog

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Arkansas could do more in pre-K, but ....

Posted By on Thu, Jan 8, 2015 at 10:35 AM

After a promising start in providing pre-K education, Arkansas has been falling behind in reaching the kids who need it most, according to a report highlighted by Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families.

The finding is part of a report by Education Week. It gives Arkansas a C- grade and a ranking of 36th in the country based on performance in three rankings — school finance, K-12 achievement and a chance for success category.

Pre-K program hasn't had a budget increase in Arkansas since 2008 and has lost enrollment since.

The outcome of the governor's race indicates slim chances of improvement. Democrat Mike Ross, who lost, promised universal pre-K. The winner, Asa Hutchinson, was reluctant to commit to additional support for pre-K, at one point describing it as something of a welfare program. He meant that negatively, of course, though it's true that it is of greatest benefit to people who can't afford to provide pre-K with their own resources.

Said a release from Arkansas Advocates:

Jerri Derlikowski, education policy director for Arkansas Advocates for Children and Families (AACF), says she’s worried about the lack of funding for pre-K in Arkansas. She says without a cost-of-living adjustment for pre-K funding, at a minimum, the quality of our pre-K programs will continue to drop. Some programs may also be forced to close as they reach the breaking point on finding ways to cover increased costs with no increases in revenue.

“We won’t be able to sustain our current program without adequate funding,” Derlikowski says. “We’re glad the report recognizes areas in which Arkansas really excels at pre-K, but the lack of funding is real, and it will hurt us in the future. The lack of investment doesn’t just hurt our ranking in a study, it has a very real impact on the education of our children and their ability to compete in the global economy.”

Derlikowski says she particularly troubled by the state’s ranking in the gap in attendance between poor children and their more affluent counterparts. Sixty-four percent of 3- and 4-year-olds in households earning $100,000 or more attend pre-K. Only 40 percent of kids who live in households that make less than $20,000 per year do so. Pre-K helps low-income students gain academic ground, but if there’s no room for those students in the state’s pre-K program, it can hurt their chances at a successful academic career. 



Tags: ,

From the ArkTimes store

Favorite

Comments (7)

Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

 
Subscribe to this thread:
Showing 1-7 of 7

Add a comment

More by Max Brantley

  • Womack gets questions. He doesn't answer

    The resistance mustered a turnout for a rare public appearance by U.S. Rep. Steve Womack, which meant a ferry ride from Peel, Ark., and a drive almost to Missouri. He didn't seem happy to see them.
    • Aug 22, 2017
  • Democratic Party calls for resignation of Jake Files

    The Arkansas Democratic Party says Republican Sen. Jake Files of Fort Smith should resign over news about handling of state General Improvement Fund money that wound up with him, not the project for which it was intended.
    • Aug 22, 2017
  • Rutledge touts effort to allow discrimination against gay people

    Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is braying about her intervention in yet another out-of-state lawsuit — this one to protect a Washington state florist who doesn't want to sell flowers to gay people for use at their wedding.
    • Aug 22, 2017
  • More »

Readers also liked…

  • Super Bowl line

    Over to you.
    • Feb 7, 2016
  • Mitch Landrieu on the removal of Confederate tributes in New Orleans

    You want to hear the words of a strong mayor? Read the speech delivered by New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu on the removal of the last of four Lost Cause tributes in the city. THIS is a strong mayor. Brilliant.
    • May 22, 2017
  • Auditor Lea caught not telling the truth

    State Auditor Andrea Lea, who began her tenure in statewide office with a degree of competence unseen in some other Republican counterparts (think Treasurer Dennis Milligan particularly), is becoming more deeply mired in a political scandal.
    • Mar 4, 2016

Most Shared

Most Viewed

  • Troubles mount for Sen. Jake Files. Maybe others, too

    Sen. Jakes Files has serious problems, based on an FBI affidavit filed Monday in Fort Smith. One new question is how many other legislators have problems based on spending of state surplus money?
  • Democratic Party calls for resignation of Jake Files

    The Arkansas Democratic Party says Republican Sen. Jake Files of Fort Smith should resign over news about handling of state General Improvement Fund money that wound up with him, not the project for which it was intended.

Most Recent Comments

  • Re: Tuesday's open line

    • Sorry--I posted the wrong list above. The current list is for the class of 2021…

    • on August 23, 2017
  • Re: Tuesday's open line

    • To distract from the Trump craziness, here is the annual Beloit College Mindset List. It…

    • on August 23, 2017
  • Re: Womack gets questions. He doesn't answer

    • Big thanks to the Indivisible members who took the time to make that out-of-the-way trip…

    • on August 22, 2017

Blogroll

 

© 2017 Arkansas Times | 201 East Markham, Suite 200, Little Rock, AR 72201
Powered by Foundation