Full Day Kindergarten, Again…

One of the few legislators who’s willing to do his job, take a stand, and take the risk of actually proposing legislation that would refer a measure to the ballot is Senator Andy Kerr.

For the past 4 years in a row, Senator Kerr has proposed this same bill.  Let’s fund full-day kindergarten for all Colorado kids and actually ask the voters if they are willing to fund it.  

Each time the senator has submitted the same legislation, the Senate leadership referred it to the Kill Committee (State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee), which is what they’ve already done this session, without allowing the voters a voice and without listening to the experts who tell us how positively crucial the impact of early childhood education really is.

For years, education advocates have been begging for funded early childhood education from the state.  For years, education advocates have been asking our legislators to take a risk and refer something to the voters to help pay for kindergarten or any additional funding for public education.  Senator Andy Kerr has been willing to do just that.

It does pose the question, what does the Senate leadership, which also happens to be Republican, fear so badly that they won’t allow this proposed legislation to be heard?   Why wouldn’t they even consider letting their colleagues debate it?  

This is Senator Kerr’s last session. This is his last opportunity to do what’s really right for our state’s children. Senator Kerr has continued to try, but his Senate colleagues obviously don’t have the same desire. What does that say about the other elected officials? What does it say about us, if we won’t even question it?

“They say, if you want to know what a community values, look at how its children are treated. If you want a sense of what a community hopes for the future, look at how it values its schools.”

From Chalkbeat’s article https://www.chalkbeat.org/posts/co/2018/01/10/heres-a-look-at-the-first-education-bills-to-hit-the-floor-in-colorado/:

SB18-004 Funding for Full-Day Kindergarten

This bill with a single Democratic sponsor, state Sen. Andy Kerr, went straight to a kill committee, but it might not be the only effort this session to finally find the money for this long-standing deficiency. This bill would refer a measure to the voters asking them to authorize spending above the cap imposed by the Taxpayer’s Bill of Rights. Previous efforts to get taxpayers to pay more statewide have not been successful.

Funding For Full-day Kindergarten | Colorado General Assembly

SJK will be at the Capitol on January 31st to testify on this bill.  If you’d like to do so as well, let us know.