Governor Newsom Visits Fresno Elementary School, Signs Early Learning Act

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FRESNO, Calif. (KSEE) – Gov. Gavin Newsom visited a transitional kindergarten class at Sunset Elementary in Fresno on Tuesday morning before signing legislation to improve early learning for children statewide.

As part of Newsom’s $ 123.9 billion preschool and K-12 education program, the state is seeking to offer a free preschool to all 4-year-olds in the state. The program would begin in 2022-2023 with full implementation scheduled by 2025-2026, according to a statement sent by the governor’s office.

“This is an application and implementation that will take a few years, I don’t want to promise too much that everything will light up overnight, now savings accounts this process will go faster,” Newsom said. .

This plan includes $ 1.9 billion for college savings accounts of $ 500 to $ 1,500 for low-income students, English learners, and homeless and fostered youth. These students will have savings accounts opened when they register for the first year. Details are still being worked out.

“We are doing something on a large scale that has never been done before, so a lot of the details and the application need to be worked out over the next few weeks,” Newsom said. “We are using $ 2 billion in COVID relief funds to create a college culture. “

Newsom was joined by Fresno Mayor Jerry Dyer, State Superintendent Tony Thurmond, Fresno Unified Superintendent Bob Nelson and Valley lawmakers.

And also among those present during her visit was Alma Renteria, a transitional kindergarten teacher at Sunset Elementary.

Renteria saw first-hand the impacts early learning can have on children.

“If we also look at academics, where they start to learn their letters, they connect their numbers, and at an early age, that’s going to prepare them for a better future,” Renteria said.

For university savings accounts, the statement said, the state predicts that about 3.7 million current students will benefit. Newsom said this was independent of the families’ immigration status.

The statement added that the plan also includes $ 10 million to expand bilingual immersion programs and $ 300 million to increase the number of public preschool or transitional kindergarten programs as well as the training of pre-school teachers. – kindergarten.


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