Testimony to the Senate Education Committee
My name is Andrea Brauer, and I am the Early Education Policy Associate with Texans Care for Children. I also facilitate the Texas Early Education Alliance, a group of stakeholders that collaborate on improving early care and education in Texas.
We appreciate the increased focus on pre-K this session, led by Governor Abbott, and those members carrying HB 4.
However, we are concerned that the funding identified still would not restore Texas to 2011 pre-K funding levels. Since pre-K was deemed an emergency issue, I would hope the funding and substance behind the initiative would be reflective of a true priority for our state. If the $118 million proposed for the biennium were doubled, it would provide an additional $500 for every pre-K student, putting Texas just above the national average. To achieve the world class program that is the goal, a pre-K program would require average funding, at a minimum.