Child Care Industry Cool To Free Preschool Push

Representatives of Minnesota’s child care industry say a push to fund all-day preschool will make their services more expensive.

Senate Democrats want to set aside money for statewide preschool programs starting with the 2015 school year. It’s estimated doing so would cost the state about $170 million that year.

Enrollment in the free programs would be voluntary. But the child care industry says they would siphon 4-year-olds out of the roughly 9,700 licensed child care programs across the state.

Child care providers say that would force them to raise rates for younger children.
A Senate education finance committee heard the universal preschool bill Wednesday but did not take any action.

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