Letter: Kindergarten bill will help N.H.

As a member of the Concord School Board and strong advocate for full-day kindergarten for our schools, I was happy to hear about the passing of SB-191. While we have more work to do, I’d like to thank the state Legislature for passing SB-191 and investing additional funding for full-day kindergarten programs in the Granite State. I’m grateful that Democrats and Republicans were able to come together on this critical issue.

I have mixed feelings with the funding source being tied to the success of keno, however, this Legislation is a step in the right direction and will have a positive impact on many children and families throughout our state. At our meetings this past year we spent a lot of time in thoughtful discussion on the benefits of full-day kindergarten and it is my personal opinion that the cost to implement full-day programming was the driving factor for why it didn’t pass in Concord. I will continue to work hard on the School Board alongside advocates and organizations like Save the Children Action Network and Campaign for a Family Friendly Economy to push for policies that increase access to early learning, including full-day kindergarten and preschool. The benefits of high-quality early learning programs are too large to ignore. Kids who participate are less likely to drop out of school, become a teen parent and become addicted to drugs. Our economy will also benefit by a better-developed workforce.

Full-day kindergarten is a winner for our state.

Pam Wicks