San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee announced Tuesday that he will expand the city’s Preschool for All program after voters in November approved a ballot measure to help fund public education and children’s services for a quarter-century.

Nearly two-thirds of the city’s 4-year-olds are in high-quality preschool programs in San Francisco, said Laurel Kloomek, executive director of San Francisco First5, which oversees 150 preschools in the city. Most of the city’s low-income preschoolers are already enrolled in city preschools, she added.

Lee is expected to discuss the preschool expansion in his state of the city address on Thursday. He said funds from Measure C, approved by nearly 75 percent of voters in November, will allow the city to provide 860 more families a year with access to public preschool programs for their children.

San Francisco’s goal is to enroll 75 percent of all 4-year-olds in preschools. There are about 6,200 4-year-olds in the city now.

The city created its universal preschool program in 2004 after voters approved Proposition H, which created the Public Education Enrichment Fund to improve public education in San Francisco. The measure set aside one-third of the fund to create a universal preschool program.

Lee said early childhood education programs provide a good return on the investment, according to economic studies.

Los Angeles also has a universal preschool program, Los Angeles Universal Preschool, which is better known as LAUP. It was created after voters in 1999 approved Proposition 10, which added a 50-cent tax on each pack of cigarettes.

Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson has recently shown interest in proposing a universal preschool system in his city.

 

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  1. Mia Boyd 2 years ago2 years ago

    Thanks for the information. I think it’s so awesome that they’re planning on expanding the preschool program. Our kids should get nothing but the best when it comes to education. I want to make sure that my preschool-aged child finds the best preschool program around. She deserves to be taught with the best curriculum.

  2. Delores Lyon 2 years ago2 years ago

    I think it is so good that preschool programs are becoming more widespread. It is important that our children are able to learn and grow from a young age. In fact, I think that preschool should become mandatory. I mean, there’s a strong correlation between preschool attendance and academic success later on! http://imaginationchildcareacademy.org/Programs.html

  3. Alisa 2 years ago2 years ago

    Investing in quality early childhood programs for infants, toddlers and preschoolers is the only proven strategy to increase positive outcomes and decrease negative outcomes. For every $1 spent, the return is $16. It also correlates strongly to less crime and less dependence on social services later in life. Just the Facts It matters for every state. Early Childhood Matters to Business The competitiveness of small, medium and large companies depends on having a … Read More

    Investing in quality early childhood programs for infants, toddlers and preschoolers is the only proven strategy to increase positive outcomes and decrease negative outcomes. For every $1 spent, the return is $16. It also correlates strongly to less crime and less dependence on social services later in life.

    Just the Facts It matters for every state.
    Early Childhood Matters to Business
    The competitiveness of small, medium and large companies depends on having a pipeline of talented, educated employees with the skills needed in today’s economy:

    • Problem-solving
    • Communication
    • Decision-making
    • Critical thinking
    • Motivation
    • Collaboration

    In Arizona, as in most of the United States, we don’t have enough workers with the skills that employers need. Nearly half the American workforce lacks the basic education and communication skills required to get a job and advance. One quarter of Arizona’s students don’t graduate from high school. That’s the bad news.

    The good news is that we know how to solve this problem.

    90% of critical brain development occurs before kindergarten. The skills and abilities employers are looking for — focus, self-discipline, motivation and collaboration — all start to take root in the first five years of life.The ROI from quality early education programs for children birth to age 5 is well established and quantifiable. Study after study demonstrates returns ranging from 4x to 16x, depending on the program analyzed, with strong, positive effects on:

    • Kindergarten readiness
    • Language, math and social skills
    • K-12 test scores
    • High school graduation
    • College enrollment

    Investing in quality early childhood programs for infants, toddlers and preschoolers is the only proven strategy to produce such returns. It also correlates strongly to less crime and less dependence on social services later in life.

    The bottom line is clear:
    • Quality early childhood education for children birth to age 5 increases school readiness, which leads to workforce readiness.
    • Allocating resources to support the health and learning of our young children is a critical economic development strategy.

    We know the importance of early childhood.

  4. Dawn Urbanek 2 years ago2 years ago

    Capistrano Unified is looking at paying the State of California $1.8 million in fines unless it reduces class sizes at 6 schools. Our Union agreed to an average class size of 30:1 in order to protect their salaries, pensions and benefits.

    It’s always about the kids…

    Replies

    • Sarah Tully 2 years ago2 years ago

      Dawn, I'm a reporter with the Orange County Register. Can you please email me about this Capo issue? Thanks! Sarah Tully, stully@ocregister.com Read More

      Dawn,
      I’m a reporter with the Orange County Register. Can you please email me about this Capo issue? Thanks!
      Sarah Tully, stully@ocregister.com

    • Gary Ravani 2 years ago2 years ago

      What a point you make there, Dawn. Because if there is any group who ought to be paying for reduced class size in your district, it's undoubtedly the teachers. When it comes to issues where "it's all about the kids" the parents, community members, the tax payers of the state have no responsibility whatsoever. There is likely a planet somewhere in the galaxy where what I just said makes sense. When it comes to the "kids," … Read More

      What a point you make there, Dawn. Because if there is any group who ought to be paying for reduced class size in your district, it’s undoubtedly the teachers. When it comes to issues where “it’s all about the kids” the parents, community members, the tax payers of the state have no responsibility whatsoever. There is likely a planet somewhere in the galaxy where what I just said makes sense.

      When it comes to the “kids,” and the teachers who devote their careers to serving the interests of those kids, it pays to remember that these same kids do have parents.

      Do you realize that the last state effort for class size reduction (CSR) was not fully funded by the state? Every union I am aware of in the state bargained to accept the program anyway. That funding discrepancy, the difference from what the state paid and what CSR actually cost, came right off the table and district general funds that could have gone to salaries.

      The union could have proposed class sizes of 33 or 35 or 40 or 60 and dramatically increased the amount available for compensation.

      One of the things the public sometimes ignore is that when bargaining it is not just the union who makes up the final agreement. Management is there too, and because of statute in CA, most bargaining power lies with management. Where were they on CSR? And yes, there’s some irony here, as many (in)famous school administrators whine loudly and publicly about how they are constrained in so many ways by collective bargaining agreements that they were intimately involved in creating.

      If you are truly interested in looking at CSR in your district investigate to what extent, if any, the district has an overly ambitious reserve fund. Then go out and organize parents to vote for a parcel tax that is primarily devoted to CSR. Then organize the same parents to lobby the state to make Prop 30 permanent, reform Prop 13, and otherwise increase the state’s revenue stream to support the schools the way you believe, and will commit resources toward, they should be supported. For the kids.

  5. Dawn Urbanek 2 years ago2 years ago

    If you cannot adequately educate the K-12 students why does the State of California want to educate pre-schoolers and adults? Really- we do not need our people to have one source of knowledge from cradle to grave. What has happened to America? Hard work and individualism is what made this country great! That is why immigrants from all over the world want to come here. What is so bad about being a Great America again? … Read More

    If you cannot adequately educate the K-12 students why does the State of California want to educate pre-schoolers and adults? Really- we do not need our people to have one source of knowledge from cradle to grave. What has happened to America? Hard work and individualism is what made this country great! That is why immigrants from all over the world want to come here. What is so bad about being a Great America again? Legalize immigration and bring people to this country who are educated and can make America great. Don’t just open your borders to the poor and illiterate. The math will never work and the more poor and illiterate that you allow to enter this country, the poorer and less educated you make your own citizens.

    California – go back to the Constitution and fund a free and equal education and a Militia. Then let everyone work hard for everything else. Citizens of the United States are very generous and will do a better job of helping the needy privately than the State will every do.

    California should be held to its Constitution and get rid of every program and entitlement except education and the militia. California currently cares more about people from other nations than its own.

    What educated people eat their own?

    The new funding LCFF is suppose to provide a base grant which meets the constitutional obligation of providing a FREE and EQUAL education to EVERY student. Then give additional funding for ELL and the Poor yet the formula deprives EVERYONE in wealth Districts of an adequate education ESPECIALLY the ELL and the poor who do not have the ability to fundraise for class size reductions, programs and maintenance.

    Replies

    • Tom 2 years ago2 years ago

      And furthermore Dawn, why does the Federal Government want free pre-school when the country is $18 trillion in debt? Bottom line, it is a great, political feel good move but WE CANNOT AFFORD to do it! Recent history is full of examples of politicians doing similar fiscally irresponsible things. When is it going to stop? When we “run out of other peoples money”?

    • Gary Ravani 2 years ago2 years ago

      Well, folks, the US could adopt the assumptions you make about what the country "stands for," no matter how alien to the ideas contained in the Preamble to the Constitution. The next step would be to edit the text found inside the base of this nation's enduring symbol of welcome to immigrants, the Statue of Liberty. That quote is: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” Perhaps it should be changed … Read More

      Well, folks, the US could adopt the assumptions you make about what the country “stands for,” no matter how alien to the ideas contained in the Preamble to the Constitution.

      The next step would be to edit the text found inside the base of this nation’s enduring symbol of welcome to immigrants, the Statue of Liberty.

      That quote is: “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.”

      Perhaps it should be changed to: ” Legalize immigration and bring people to this country who are educated and can make America great. Don’t just open your borders to the poor and illiterate.”

      On the other hand, the latter just doesn’t have the same ring to it, does it?

  6. Slammy 2 years ago2 years ago

    SF Free Preschool for All does not have any income requirements. The only restrictions are age, residency, and finding a participating provider with an opening. Expanding the number of providers should help more San Franciscans of all classes. My experience as a parent was that preschools in the program often were higher quality than others because SF Free Preschool for All has higher requirements for teachers and directors (like continuing education) and facilities.

  7. Don 2 years ago2 years ago

    Universal pre-school? Balderdash! Since when did universal come to de defined as for a specific select group? Now, don't get me wrong. I'm all for every child having the opportunity to go to pre-school. What I'm not for is a public/private education system in which those who can pay do pay full fare and the rest get it for free through taxpayer assistance. The middle class is not an ever ending fount that can tapped by … Read More

    Universal pre-school? Balderdash!

    Since when did universal come to de defined as for a specific select group?

    Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m all for every child having the opportunity to go to pre-school. What I’m not for is a public/private education system in which those who can pay do pay full fare and the rest get it for free through taxpayer assistance. The middle class is not an ever ending fount that can tapped by politicians without creating more suburban flight and the concomitant impoverishment of SFUSD schools in a city in which almost 40% opt for private. San Francisco’s black middle class has virtually abandon the City for where? …the suburbs or states with better education funding. I don’t think they left because they are racists. (cue Floyd)

    And then, after creating this two-tiered structure in pre-schools and elementary and secondary schools that part of the economic landscape driving the middle class out of San Francisco, the same advocates of social justice want to take the decision-making for school site donated dollars out of the hands of the donors and allocate the funding “universally”, reverting back to the original definition.