News and Views: Early childhood education help kids, saves tax money too. Plus: A call for pre-k in basic ed; And: Lawmakers consider a childcare workers union.

January 29, 2010 | Alex Stone

Early childhood education (ECE) programs provide a strong educational foundation for learning and help kids prosper in school and in life. But according to a recent study from Michigan, that’s not all —  ECE programs may also provide long-term economic benefits for taxpayers. A local newspaper is calling on Washington lawmakers to include pre-k programs in the definition of basic education. And the debate about whether childcare workers should be allowed to unionize is on — again — in Olympia.

Michigan Report: Pre-school saves taxpayer money | An interesting report today from the recession battered state of Michigan: It found that pre-school attendance saves taxpayers money and can be a sound investment by giving youngsters a foundation they need to become productive members of society.The report comes at a time when Michigan, struggling with reduced tax revenues and high unemployment, has cut many of its publicly supported early childhood programs back drastically. | More: Early Ed Coverage

Prekindergarten must be part of basic education | The 2010 legislative session is a pivotal time for early childhood learning in this state. Lawmakers must include the prekindergarten years as part of basic education and continue to fund programs that prepare children and families for the early school years. | More: Olympian

Child care workers could unionize under bill in Olympia | On Wednesday, the House of Representatives voted 62-35 for a bill (House Bill 1329) granting collective bargaining rights to workers of day care centers that receive state subsidies for serving low-income children. | More: Everett Herald

Child care collective bargaining debate: Will it lead to higher quality? Or is state worker bargaining a failed experiment? | This morning, the House  re-passed a bill that would allow certain child care workers the right to unionize. The arguments pro and con are summed up here. | More:  TVW

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Posted in Early Learning, Education

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