A total of 23 governors (13 Democrats and 10 Republicans), as well as the mayor of the District of Columbia, have referenced early care and education in their 2014 State of the State addresses thus far. The focus on this important issue reflects a recognition that early care and education helps children succeed in school and in life, enables parents to work, and strengthens states’ economies now and in the future. A number of governors offered specific proposals to significantly expand access to high-quality early learning opportunities. For example, Michigan Governor Rick Snyder called for an additional $65 million for prekindergarten, matching the $65 million added in the previous year. Missouri Governor Jay Nixon proposed to triple funding for prekindergarten. Indiana Governor Mike Pence called for the establishment of a new voluntary prekindergarten program. The governors of Connecticut, New York, and Vermont noted that the ultimate goal was to move toward universal prekindergarten. District of Columbia Mayor Vincent Gray proposed to expand access to high-quality early care and education for infants and toddlers, and Illinois Governor Pat Quinn proposed an initiative that would reach children from birth to age five.
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