Daley, Policy Committee discuss importance of early childhood education

MERION STATION, April 13 – State Rep. Mary Jo Daley, D-Montgomery, today hosted a House Democratic Policy Committee hearing at Saint Joseph’s University on the importance of investment in early childhood development programs in Pennsylvania.

“Children are incredibly impressionable and medical reports consistently state that the most rapid brain development happens between ages 3 and 4. A recent study confirmed that children who did not participate in early learning is 70 percent more likely to be arrested for a violent crime by 18. That number is staggering, and the precise reason why we need to continue to stress the need for investment in early childhood education. I see it as a down payment in our future and I thank the Policy Committee for coming to hear testimony on how and why we should make this investment,” Daley said.

House Democratic Policy Committee Chairman Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, added, “Studies show, time and time again, that early childhood education is worth the investment. Every $1 invested returns $7 back to Pennsylvania. Better prepared children, higher test scores and reduced crime rates are all benefits of that investment. I’ll continue to support investing in our children at this hearing and in our state budget.”

Testifiers included Ailene Keys, maternal child health supervisor, Montgomery County Health Department; Nadine Miller, program improvement administrator, Montgomery County Office of Children and Youth; Maggy Saad, parent; Cathleen Palm, founder, Center for Children’s Justice; Shaun Elliott, president and chief executive officer, Philadelphia Freedom Valley YMCA; Zakiyyah Boone, vice president of child care, Philadelphia Freedom Valley YMCA and Bruce Clash, Pennsylvania state director, FIGHT CRIME: INVEST IN KIDS.

Hearing materials are available at www.pahouse.com/PolicyCommittee