TITLE 17. EDUCATION

CHAPTER 1. GENERAL SCHOOL LAW

PART X-A. LOUISIANA EARLY CHILDHOOD EDUCATION

 

17:407.22  Legislative findings and intent

 

A. The legislature finds and declares that:

 

(1) In order to significantly improve outcomes at all levels of the state's educational system, it is imperative that standards for, and expectations of, our early childhood programs be raised to levels that will promote kindergarten readiness and sustain lifelong learning and achievement.

 

(2) Publicly-funded early childhood programs should prioritize kindergarten readiness and public monies should fund programs that excel at achieving high levels of kindergarten readiness, or progression towards kindergarten readiness, as applicable for the ages of children served.

 

(3) Parents who choose to send their children to publicly-funded early childhood programs should have clear and actionable information on the quality of the programs available.

 

(4) Providers of publicly-funded early childhood programs should be held accountable for the public monies they receive, but given the autonomy to implement an educational program that promotes and achieves kindergarten readiness without undue regulation.

 

(5) State entities involved in the oversight or provision of early childhood programs should collaborate, set standards of educational achievement for young children that align with standards established for children enrolled in grades kindergarten through twelve, and hold providers of publicly-funded early childhood programs accountable without imposing undue regulation on said programs.

 

(6) There are high quality early childhood programs in this state that can serve as a model for increasing standards of achievement and financial efficiency in publicly-funded early childhood programs.

 

(7) Publicly-funded early childhood programs receive a significant amount of public monies that can and should be maximized in pursuit of high quality early childhood programs that achieve high levels of kindergarten readiness or progression towards kindergarten readiness, as applicable for the ages of children served.

 

(8) Tax incentives created for the purpose of promoting high quality early childhood programs should be awarded based on kindergarten readiness, or progression towards kindergarten readiness, as applicable for the ages of children served.

 

(9) A fragmented system of standards, funding, and oversight of the state's publicly-funded early childhood programs serves as a barrier to providing every child with the high quality services and programs which he deserves and to providing parents with the information needed to make an informed choice when selecting the programs that best fit the needs of their children.

 

B. It is the intent of the legislature that a comprehensive and integrated delivery system for early childhood care and education be created to ensure that every child enters kindergarten healthy and ready to learn.

 

Added by Acts 2012, No. 3, ยง 1, eff. April 18, 2012.