Advocating for early childhood education

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) — In honor of Early Childhood Advocacy Day, a big push at the State Capitol today will focus on early childhood education.

Politicians, parents, and even some of youngest state residents took to Hartford and made their case, describing how early learning programs have shown better vocabularies, higher IQ’s and improved social skills.

“I’m feeling so good. I thank God, because they help me a lot,” said Oscar Tiapa, Danbury parent.

Tiapa says that he’s been lucky to have preschool available for his children, something state leaders are looking to expand for other families like his. The goal is to create four thousand more spots over the next four years, since they say that Pre-K can be costly

“The Head Start program is filled with a big waiting list. The child daycare centers are filled with waiting lists and the school readiness program is only in certain towns right now,” said Merrill Gay, Exec. Dir. CT Health Alliance.

Not only do they want to get more students enrolled, they want to create a permanent early childhood office.

“I think parents are informed about what’s available, but unfortunately we have so many siloed approaches to early education, care and systems,” said Gay.  

To streamline the process that the Tapia family is navigating and is so far happy with the journey.

“There’s a program for the two children. The small ones and they love it too. They love going to school too,” said Tapia.

Educators say this early love for school will help them down the education road.

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