From left, Neil Browning, Cynthia Rees and Clark County Sheriff Gene Kelly at Clark County Jail
Credit Lewis Wallace / WYSO
A national coalition of law enforcement officials is calling on Congress to fully fund preschool programs for low-income kids. Over 30 Ohio police chiefs, sheriffs and prosecutors have signed a letter to Congress asking legislators to pass President Obama’s proposal to put $75 billion into early childhood education over ten years. They say it would ultimately pay itself off in the reduced costs of incarceration.
The number of low-income children in Head Start's preschool programs in Ohio will drop by more than 1,800 during this school year because of automatic federal spending cuts.
The Office of Head Start says those cuts will reduce its preschool ranks by more than 57,000 children nationwide. More than a million children are served each year by the programs, which help prepare them for elementary school and give them meals and health care.
Some conservative Ohio lawmakers and some faith leaders who generally support conservative causes want to put millions of additional dollars into more preschool for at risk children, something a lot of Democrats have championed in the past, and the push is on at the Ohio Statehouse to get more money for early childhood education.