State of Ohio Partnership Expands Early Start Columbus
For Immediate Release
July 18, 2014
For More Information:
John Ivanic, City Council, 645-6798
Dan Williamson, Mayor’s Office, 645-5300
Matt Smydo, Education Department, 645-1689
Joined by Gov. John R. Kasich, Mayor Michael B. Coleman today announced a partnership with the State of Ohio to expand early learning programs in Columbus. Through this partnership, funding will be available for quality pre-K providers to serve 160 additional low-income four-year-olds. This increases the number of quality full-day early education opportunities created by Early Start Columbus to more than 500. Mayor Coleman has submitted legislation to City Council to allocate $700,000 toward this expansion on top of the $3.4 million that was invested last month in the first phase of Early Start. The State of Ohio’s pre-K expansion program includes almost $2.2 million for quality early childhood education for children within the Columbus City Schools district boundaries.
“The State of Ohio is helping us to extend Early Start Columbus to more of our children,” Mayor Coleman said. “We cannot reach our goal of universal access to quality early childhood education alone. I thank Gov. Kasich for being the first partner to invest in our effort.”
The Ohio Department of Education is funding half days of quality pre-K education throughout the state. The City of Columbus and the State of Ohio are aligning their efforts to provide access to full-day pre-K at shared expense. Providers participating in the expansion include:
- Child Development Council, 3260 Allegheny Ave.
- Child Development Council, 867 Mount Vernon Ave.
- Child Development Council, 2350 Mound St.
- Columbus Early Learning Centers, 240 North Champion Ave.
- Creative Child Care, 1601 Shanley Dr.
- Creative Child Care, 5815 Westbourne Ave.
- Gladden Community House, 183 Hawkes Ave.
- Heavenly Kids Center for Learning, 404 E. Mound St.
- Hilltop Preschool, 2473 W. Broad St.
- Little Disciples Learning Center, 4142 Westerville Rd.
- Maize Manor Preschool, 3901 Maize Rd.
- Schoenbaum Family Center, 175 E. 7th Ave.
- Sonshine Christian Academy, 1965 Gladstone Ave.
- South Side Learning & Development Center, 1700 S. 20th St.
- South Side Learning & Development Center, 255 Reeb Ave.
- St. Catherine Preschool, 500 South Gould Ave.
- St. Stephen's Christ Child-Child Care Center, 1500 East 17th Ave.
- Starting Point Learning Center, LLC, 2533 Lockbourne Rd.
“Getting off to a strong start before kindergarten is vital—especially among our most at-risk students—and this new partnership of state and local funds will help our youngest learners grow and stay on track,” Gov. Kasich said. “I’m proud of the work we’re doing with Mayor Coleman and I applaud his commitment to Ohio’s youngest children.”
According to the Ohio Department of Education, 85 percent of a child’s brain development takes place by the age of 5, and young children exposed to high-quality education settings exhibit better language and mathematics skills, better social skills and better relationships with peers in their classroom.
“This investment in early childhood education is an investment in the future of Columbus,” said Councilmember Priscilla R. Tyson, chair of the Health & Human Services committee. “This community will not be all it can be if we fail our children during this critical time in their learning process.”
Those interested in enrolling a 4-year-old in Early Start Columbus should contact Action for Children at 224-0222 or through its website, www.actionforchildren.org.