Funding Early Learning

9 years 8 months 2 weeks ago January 09, 2007 Jan 9, 2007 Tuesday, January 09 2007 Tuesday, January 09, 2007 9:50:22 PM CST in News

The investment would benefit kids like 22-month-old Sean Keene. His parents enrolled him in Parents As Teachers, a program that guides parents through their child's development before kindergarten.

"I enjoy it personally, being a stay-at-home mom, having her come in and just have her visit with me. It's very helpful about what my son is doing. I can share with her any frustrations, or challenges or milestones he's accomplished," Sean's mother, Misty Keene, said.

A strong early education can benefit kids in the long term and Sean's dad can tell when he works with his college students.

"I get to know the students and talk to them, you know, what was your experiences in the early developmental stages. Well I went to this pre-school that had this curriculum, this kindergarten, I went to this type of school system," Sean's father, Wayne Keene, said.

The $2 million Blunt wants would be a fraction of the program's 2008 budget, but Sean's teacher says it would help Parents As Teachers reach more kids.

"Instead of going to a home two times a year, I could possibly go three. Or in some families, five. It just depends on the age of the child. So, if I could increase that, that would just give the parents more opportunites in different ideas they can work with their kids," parent educator Tina Stone said.

Stone says the work early on will help make later learning well rounded.

Parents As Teachers is free and available to everyone with a child between newborn and three years old.

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