Richmond, VA -- The Loudoun Times-Mirror reported that Loudoun County Public School officials offered "largely hypothetical" figures concerning the cost of full-day kindergarten implementation at a recent school board working session. Both Delegate Kathleen Murphy (D-34) and Delegate John Bell (D-87) call on the school administration and School Board to offer a concrete plan that covers all aspects of implementation so that every child will have the option for a full day of kindergarten in Loudoun County.
"I want the best education for all children in Virginia; as a parent and grandparent, I believe it is critical that every child has a full day of kindergarten to be able to compete and thrive in an increasingly competitive economy," said Delegate Bell. "Legislators continue to offer solutions at the state level because of the lack of a concrete plan from Loudoun County. Students in almost every other locality have the option of full-day kindergarten, which is why I'm calling on the Loudoun County School Board and school officials to put together a plan for full implementation of this important program. We cannot leave a critical component of early childhood education to hypotheticals and guesswork."
"Once again our efforts to create a plan to implement full-day kindergarten in Loudoun was killed by Republicans on the House Education Subcommittee. Once again they rejected our effort to take a realistic look at what would be necessary to fund and implement full-day kindergarten for our children. This is shortsighted and doesn’t serve the families in Loudoun. We clearly recognize the financial challenges involved and believe that is all the more reason to have a plan in place,” said Delegate Murphy. “If we want to provide our children the best educational opportunities, we have to make a budget and make a plan.”
Delegate Murphy and Delegate Bell both carried legislation (HB 457 and 798) which would have required all school divisions that do not offer a full-day kindergarten program for every student to develop a plan to phase it in. Both bills were killed by a supermajority of Republicans on the House Education Subcommittee.