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I am writing to ask that you make funding for Head Start and Early Head Start a top priority and hope you will seek no less than $9,275,000,000 for Head Start, the same level as recommended in the President's FY 2019 budget.
Head Start and Early Head Start promote school readiness by enhancing the cognitive, physical, behavioral, and social-emotional development of children from low income families. Access to early education through a safe and positive environment is essential for academic achievement. Researchers found that children who experienced higher-quality child care consistently showed improved cognitive function and language development across the first 3 years of life. Early education also represents a strong return on the public investment. Head Start serves approximately 890,000 children between the ages of birth and 5 years, of which about 12.5 percent are children with disabilities.
Funding for Head Start and Early Head Start in FY 2019 is crucial, given only 31 percent of eligible children access Head Start and only 7 percent of eligible young children access Early Head Start. Head Start funding also pays for its self, with studies showing that for every $1 invested in high-quality preschool, taxpayers save an average of $7.
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I respectfully ask that you make Head Start and Early Head Start a top priority. Please request no less than $9,275,000,000, the level proposed in the President's fiscal year 2019 budget.
Thank you for considering my views.