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Dayton Says Republicans Trying To Eliminate Pre-K Funding

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) – Funding Pre-K education is one of Governor Mark Dayton's top priorities. But he says House Republicans are trying to eliminate it.

Gov. Dayton says last year, $25 million helped 3,300 4-year-olds with early learning in voluntary Pre-K classes in 74 school districts.

Dayton now wants a $175 million investment so more than 17,000 students can go to Pre-K in the 260 school districts that have applied for it.

"Once again 4-year-olds get regulated to the status of bargaining chips in the big political show that goes on here. It's just very, very unfortunate," Dayton said.

Republicans say they support learning scholarships and school-readiness programs over Pre-K. Pre-Kindergarten requires licensed teachers.

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