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Philadelphia Says Beverage Tax Has Created Over 250 Jobs For Pre-K Program

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The City of Philadelphia's quality pre-K program, funded by the Philly Beverage Tax, says the tax has helped create 251 jobs to date.

In a survey completed by PHLpreK providers last week, pre-K center owners and directors reported having created 191 teaching positions; 147 of which are full time and 44 are part-time. In addition, pre-K providers have hired 60 support and administrative staff members. The average wage reported is $14.72 per hour.

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"We've long known about the economic impact that investment in quality pre-K has on local communities," said Otis Hackney, Chief Education Officer for the City of Philadelphia. "PHLpreK is not only preparing thousands of students for success in school, but it's also creating hundreds of jobs in the early childhood educator sector."

Nearly half of all providers have also made facility enhancements that required hiring professional contractors, and we know that parents have also been able to return to the workforce as a result of this initiative."

"The impact of the jobs created by PHLpreK is invaluable," said Commerce Director Harold T. Epps. "The more than 250 jobs created have been added in our neighborhoods and they support a number of women and minority-owned businesses.

A dozen pre-K providers are still seeking lead and assistant teachers.

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