Pointe Coupee early childhood education sees improvements in Pre-K level classrooms

At False River Academy, a private school in New Roads, Ms. Tiffany’s pre-k class is celebrating the 50th day of school. So, today’s lesson is all about numbers
Published: Oct. 19, 2022 at 6:17 PM CDT

POINTE COUPEE, La. (WAFB) - At False River Academy, a private school in New Roads, Ms. Tiffany’s pre-k class is celebrating the 50th day of school. So, today’s lesson is all about numbers and counting.

In this classroom, a total of seven students are on scholarships, and funding from the state allows low-income families to make sure their child has the best education, even at the youngest age.

“We have our nonpublic school’s early childhood development fund, as well as our LA-4 programs, and those, provide really high-quality pre-k. We are very lucky this year that the legislature approved an increase in the rates for those, and it was increasing the amount of funding per child by a thousand dollars,” explains Pheriche Perkins who is the executive director of the Pointe Coupee Early Childhood Coalition.

Funding for the programs was originally set at around $4,000 per school year. Now, with a thousand dollars more, early childhood education programs like the one in the pre-k class are able to get more done.

“Those preschool classrooms have a developmentally appropriate curriculum and that’s not free. Those preschool classrooms have a credential, a certified teacher, which we know is not always the case in a Louisiana classroom,” adds Perkins.

Perkins says the sooner children are in school with high-quality educational programs and teachers, the brighter their future will be.

“We find that early care and education, the investments we are making now, dollar for dollar come back to us. There are studies throughout the nation that have shown that early care and education investments reduce incarceration rates by as much as 40% in a population,” says Perkins.

Perkins explains that since state lawmakers and their community have invested more in early education in the parish, school scores are increasing too.

“We want to see every single child in our parish from birth from until they go to school have access to the highest quality of early care and education,” adds Perkins.

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