Sen. Luke Kenley scuttled a pilot program of state-funded preschool vouchers for low-income families on Feb. 19, instead sending it to a summer committee to investigate 10 questions he said will help make sure Indiana launches a worthwhile program.
The chairman of the Senate education committee said some senators are concerned about the bill–which would create a five-county pilot preschool program–due to its cost and connection to the state’s private school voucher system.
House Republican leaders toured an Indianapolis preschool Wednesday, one day before the House Education Committee takes up a proposal to give preschool vouchers to low-income families in a small number of cases.
Indiana House Speaker Brian Bosma plans to spearhead efforts to create a new statewide jobs council and give families scholarships so children can attend preschool as part of an agenda focused on fighting Indiana's stubborn unemployment rate by closing the state's "skills gap."
By gutting its central office, Indianapolis Public Schools could free up $188 million to provide universal preschool, to pay key teachers more than $100,000 a year and to transform itself into a network of autonomous “opportunity” schools.
The Children's Museum of Indianapolis has received a three-year, $700,000 grant from the PNC Foundation to renovate its early childhood exhibit, Playscape. It is the first major gift the foundation has made in Indianapolis.