2018 Pre-K Task Force Recommendations
The Alabama School Readiness Alliance's Pre-K Task Force supports Governor Kay Ivey's request for a $23 million increase in state investments in First Class Pre-K during the 2018 Legislative Session.
If appropriated, this will bring total First Class Pre-K investments to $100.5 million for FY 2019 and keep the state on track to meet the Pre-K Task Force's decade long vision for fully funding First Class Pre-K.
CLICK HERE to view the complete Task Force recommendations (PDF), updated for the 2018 Legislative Session.
CLICK HERE to ask your lawmakers to support the $23 million proposed increase for First Class Pre-K.
About the Pre-K Task Force:
In 2011, the Alabama School Readiness Alliance brought together prominent statewide leaders from the business, education, medical, legal, philanthropic, military and child advocacy communities to form the Pre-K Task Force. In 2012, the Pre-K Task Force launched a ten-year campaign, now in its sixth year, to expand Alabama’s high-quality, state-funded First Class Pre-K program to reach all families that wish to enroll their children on a voluntary basis.
Since the Pre-K Task Force launched its recommendations in November of 2012, state leaders have grown the level of investment in Alabama’s First Class Pre-K program from $19 million to $77.5 million. In 2012, just six percent of Alabama’s four-year-olds were enrolled in the program. In the 2017-18 school year, approximately 28% of Alabama's four-year-olds attend First Class Pre-K. The Task Force will continue to advocate for incremental increases in state funding until Alabama's First Class Pre-K program is fully funded at a level of $144 million.
For eleven years in a row, Alabama’s First Class Pre-K program has been ranked the number one state-funded pre-kindergarten program in the country for quality by the independent National Institute for Early Education Research. A study by the Public Affairs Research Council of Alabama found that students that participate in Alabama’s First Class Pre-K program consistently outperform their peers in reading and math on state assessments. Additional studies nationally have found that students that attend a high-quality pre-k program are more likely to graduate from high school and find success in the workforce. They are also less likely to commit a crime or rely on social welfare programs as adults.
In addition to the increased funding, the Task Force recommendations include: continuing the “diverse delivery” of First Class Pre-K classrooms in public schools, Head Start and private programs (including childcare and faith-based centers); requiring that all First Class Pre-K providers adhere to the program’s quality standards; and, prioritizing new classrooms for students most at-risk of school failure.