Here & Now
12:17 pm
Thu February 20, 2014

Why Oklahoma’s Universal Pre-K Is Successful

President Obama has vowed to offer federally-funded universal early childhood education. Oklahoma has been a model state for universal pre-kindergarten.

Credit weldonlibrary / Flickr Creative Commons

Since 1998, the state has funded early education for 4-year-olds, requiring certified teachers and small classes.

Last week, Steven Dow, executive director of Community Action Project (CAP) of Tulsa, the state’s largest anti-poverty program that was involved in establishing pre-K as state policy, testified in front of the New York City Council on how Oklahoma’s program works.

“First and foremost, there was adequate funding to ensure the program that we were delivering to four-year-olds was going to be a high-quality program,” Dow says. “We said that our state’s common education system was no longer a K-12 system, instead it was a pre-K-12 system.”

----------------------

KGOU is a community-supported news organization and relies on contributions from readers and listeners to fulfill its mission of public service to Oklahoma and beyond. Donate online, or by contacting our Membership department.