On Thursday, the Senate Education Committee heard testimony on whether to support a new Transition to Kindergarten bill that would allow unlimited expansion of TK programs in the public school system. Districts weighed in with the positive outcomes of the programs for children, while early learning experts warned of the inappropriate curriculum, a limited number of days/hours of the school year, and the proven negative impact of TK on the established early learning infrastructure. WFIS outlined its concerns in a joint letter and provided testimony through its member schools.

The Governor, OSPI, and DCYF all testified in support of the bill. In conversations with the Governor’s Office, they believe public schools should provide public school-style, early learning options for families. WFIS advocates for the state to provide early learning care through the established providers who have been doing this work for the State for free for too long. The State should provide funding for families to choose the early learning school or program that best suits their family. Children should not be funneled into public schools for the benefit of the Districts without consideration for the needs of the children and families.

You can watch the hearing here.