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Pence renews push for preschool program

Gov Mike Pence called on lawmakers to reinsert a pilot program to to help low income children begin early learning programs into a bill that now would only study preschool.

Speaking in a preschool classroom at Shepherd Community Center on the East side of Indianapolis, Pence it was vital to get started with the pilot program, which was stripped out of House bill 1004 by Republicans in the Senate Education Committee last week.

“I think we have a legislative framework that will be responsible but will meet what is a very urgent need in places like Shepherd Community,” Pence said as youngsters drew pictures and read books at their desks behind him. “To act and to study is the right step this year for the people of Indiana and for the state of Indiana.”

The bill passed the House overwhelmingly last month with the pilot program included 87-9. But Senators wanted to wait until the 2015 budget making session to decide whether to launch a state-paid preschool aid program that would benefit about 1,000 low income children at a cost of about $10.6 million a year.

Read the full story on Chalkbeat IN.