The Keystone State has some work to do to provide more access to quality pre-Kindergarten programs for the youngest Pennsylvanians.
Only 43% of eligible 3- and-4-year-olds are in high-quality, publicly funded pre-K, leaving more than 87,000 without access, according to the new “State of Early Care and Education in Pennsylvania” report.
Maggie Livelsberger, policy director for Pennsylvania Partnerships For Children, said young children need access to programs preparing them to start Kindergarten. But she pointed out inadequate funding for child care has led to issues of supply and demand, affecting a family’s ability to find care they can afford.
“It also impacts child care providers, and their ability to be compensated fairly, to pay their teachers and maintain their business expenses,” Livelsberger outlined. “We are living in a world where there is a very historic workforce shortage within the child care system, and a lot of that is due to unlivable wages.”