Over the years, the funding for the grants has fluctuated. But the previous three fiscal years have seen a consistent decrease. And if the Senate budget stands, next fiscal year’s cut would represent the most significant drop in funding since the state began offering the grants in 2001.
“If the decision results in a reduction of funds it would reflect a disappointing trend that would signal a decline in funding programs for emerging learners,” said Franklin Public Schools Superintendent Maureen Sabolinski. “The research shows that early childhood education pays dividends over time.”
Franklin first applied for the grant to establish free full-day kindergarten, Sabolinski said, but has leaned on it less and less as the program grew.
“We do not rely on the grant to fund our full-day kindergarten program; however it does supplement our budget and enables us to hire additional educational assistants and to use the funds to facilitate training for our teachers,” she said.
Sabolinski would be surprised if the Legislature moved forward with the cut, as it is sure to “create a burden” for some districts.
Continue reading the full article in the Milford Daily News here
Franklin just passed the FY 2016 budget on Thursday. Some of the discussion including the presentation summarizing the school portion of the budget can be found here