Scott Bieber Chief of Police, Walla Walla and Jim McCarthy, of the Walla Walla Early Learning Coalition published an op-ed in the Walla Walla UnionBulletin urging state lawmakers in Olympia to include increased funding for the Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program. High‐quality prekindergarten such as ECEAP gets kids on a path to success in school, the workforce and life.
Current ECEAP funding only covers about half of the low‐income 3‐ and 4‐year‐olds eligible for this program. Investing more money in ECEAP will add value to dollars invested in K‐12 by ensuring kids arrive at kindergarten ready to succeed.
The nearly 10,000 youngsters left out due to inadequate space represent missed opportunities to improve future K‐12 outcomes. The Supreme Court has left the Legislature with no choice but to find a solution to K‐12 funding.