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Georgia’s Working Families Need Early Care and Education
Policymakers must increase investments in CAPS, to benefit children and families, public safety, and national security
More than two-thirds of the parents of children under age 6 in Georgia work outside the home. These parents need early care and education (ECE) so they can go to work, remain productive, and build successful careers to support their families. Their children depend on nurturing, stimulating environments, at home and in ECE, during these critical years of brain development.
Beyond these benefits for individual children and families, however, quality ECE has implications for public safety and national security. Research has shown that quality ECE can reduce the risk of child behavior problems and later criminal behavior. ECE programs that emphasize healthy eating and physical activity can help reduce children’s risk of obesity, one of the major medical disqualifiers for military service.
We must invest upfront in early learning opportunities for our children, rather than paying the high cost of school failure down the road.
Chief Joseph Wirthman, Jefferson Police Department
Georgia policymakers must support early care and education for working families, by increasing investments in the CAPS program, to help more eligible working families access quality child care. Legislators must also sustain investments in Georgia’s Pre-K program, to serve four-year-olds and their families, despite pressures on the state budget due to COVID-19. Support for high-quality early care and education is an investment in the future strength of our state and our nation.