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June 12, 2007

Senate File 839 & House File 1056: Early Childhood Educational Programs in Daycare

Sponsors:
Senate File 839: Senators Tarryl L. Clark (DFL), Claire A. Robling (R), and Terri E. Bonoff (DFL)

House File 1056: Representatives Nora Slawik (DFL), David Bly (DFL), Rob Eastlund (R), Sandra Peterson (DFL), Augustine “Willie” Dominguez (DFL), Mary Murphy (DFL), and Dave Olin (DFL)

Summary:
Senate File 839 and HF 1086 establish a program to “improve the educational offerings” in various early childhood programs and care facilities. These bills essentially turn daycares into preschools.

Status:

2/15/2007(Senate) S.F. 839: Introduction and first reading
2/15/2007(Senate) S.F. 839: Referred to Finance
2/15/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Introduction and first reading
2/15/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Referred to Finance
2/16/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Referred by Chair to Education Finance and Economic Competitiveness Finance Division
2/19/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Referred by Chair to Early Childhood Learning Finance Division
2/19/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Author added—Peterson, S.
2/19/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Author added—Dominguez
3/19/2007(Senate) S.F. 839: Authors added—Robling, Bonoff
3/27/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Author added—Murphy, M.
3/27/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Division Action: To pass as amended and return to Education Finance and Economic Competitiveness Finance Division
3/28/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Division Action: To pass as amended and return to Finance
4/10/2007(House) H.F. 1056: Author added—Olin

HSLDA's Position:
Oppose. Proponents of these bills believe that this program benefits children and their parents by providing educational opportunities for young children. However, studies show that these types of programs are more costly and less beneficial than the bills’ supporters would have you believe. Additionally, and of more concern, is that this legislation, if passed, may provide the groundwork for passage of Universal Preschool legislation, i.e. publicly funded preschool education for children three to five years of age. Universal Preschool has been used as a strategy by proponents in other states to pave the way for attempts at Mandatory Universal Preschool—essentially the lowering of the compulsory age of attendance. These cases have failed so far, but only because of citizens’ alert and resolute action.

Action Requested:
None

 Other Resources

Senate File 839 Bill Text

Senate File 839 Bill History

House File 1056 Bill Text

House File 1056 Bill History