Wilson bill would address critical needs of early learners

  • Monday, January 20, 2020 4:52pm
  • News
Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Auburn. FILE PHOTO

Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Auburn. FILE PHOTO

Early learners would get the assistance and support they need to avoid falling behind their peers in kindergarten and throughout life, under legislation heard today by the Senate Early Learning & K-12 Education Committee.

“Not everyone is ready to learn when they enter kindergarten, and those who aren’t often fall behind early and stay behind,” said Sen. Claire Wilson, D-Auburn, the committee’s vice chair. “This is a pattern that can hinder them through grade school and high school, into their careers and even into retirement. They lag academically, they fare worse in getting jobs and promotions and saving for retirement, and even their health may suffer.”

Among other things, Wilson’s Senate Bill 6253 would:

• Expand eligibility for Workings Connections benefits and the Early Education Assistance and Care Program;

• Reform the state’s confusing range of services and access by creating a single entry point from which each child can be directed to the programs or assistance they need; and

• Replace the current system in which students either qualify for a myriad of assistance and support, or qualify for none, with a system that provides students with assistance and support based on individual need.

“Under our current system, many children go overlooked and struggle in the critical early learning years,” Wilson said. “By making sure those who need assistance early on enter kindergarten ready to learn, and by redirecting our services to better match actual student needs, our students will be more successful in school and throughout life.”

Studies show that every dollar invested to address these early learning needs saves $7 in long-term educational and social costs by ensuring that early learners are ready to learn when it matters most.

“The critical early needs can mean the difference between someone who thrives through school into adulthood and throughout their life, and someone who struggles and requires assistance in multiple areas,” Wilson said. “Of all the money we can spend on education, investing in early learning can make the biggest difference and bring the largest return.”

Other components of the bill would increase access to parent education and support programs and phase in subsidy rate increases for licensed childcare providers to 75 percent of the market rate by 2023.

More in News

Senate passes Wilson bill to correct timetable for childcare payments

Another bill prohibits solitary confinement of youths

Metro describes benefits of future bus base to city leaders

King County’s population has grown by more than 2 percent every year… Continue reading

Student arrested after bringing gun to Thomas Jefferson High School

Police believe the student discarded the handgun during or at the end of a fight with another student and retrieved it again later in the day.

Schools stage Future Lions Family Fitness Night on Feb. 27

Program includes entertainment, music and activities, fitness dance instruction, games and obstacle courses

From left, social workers Tamara Liebich-Lantz and Carrie Talamaivao, SKFR Capt. Roy Smith and VRFA Firefighter Johan Friis smile for a photo in front of the CARES SUV at the Valley Regional Fire Authority Station 35. Photo courtesy of CARES
South King Fire, Valley Regional Fire CARES for the local community

The Community Assistance, Referrals and Education Services unit fills niche of emergency assistance to help South King County’s most vulnerable populations.

Seattle Police bust Auburn man for possession of illegal drugs and firearms

Seattle Police Department SWAT and narcotics detectives recently arrested a 37-year-old Auburn… Continue reading

Auburn’s local streets in good shape

Collectors and arterials, eh, not so hot

Senate passes Wilson bill to make childcare facilities gun-free zones

Childcare facilities would carry the same prohibitions on deadly weapons as K-12… Continue reading

Most Read