AMARILLO---Kindergarten and first grade are two of the most commonly repeated grades for Texas children. Some area administrators are fighting to keep a state program they say will help prepare children for those levels, and save districts thousands of dollars.
The Texas School Ready Project! is responsible for providing materials and training to early education centers. Currently, the project is slated to receive its usual 15 million dollars in state funding over the biennium to help boost early education in Texas. However, administrators are fearful, the program is still not safe because lawmakers are still debating the state's budget deficit.
Earlier this year, NewsChannel 10 reported the program was on the chopping block to be cut completely. Right now, both the senate and house proposed budgets have not touched the program. TSR Administrators are hoping lawmakers will continue to support the program they say has an educational benefit to thousands of Texas children and economic benefit to the state.
"Our research shows for every dollar you put into early childhood education, districts and the state get a return of $3.50." said Amarillo College educator, Mary Claire Munger.
According to Munger, six out of every ten Texas children are unprepared for kindergarten.