An invitation from the AJC editor to a pre-k forum Thursday. It’s a great panel. Hope to see you there.

downeyart (Medium)On behalf of Kevin Riley, the editor of the AJC:

Dear Friends:

• Georgia’s Pre-K early childhood education program has been a national model in its 20 years of existence.

• “Where does it go from here?” is a question many are pondering today.

To help answer that question, the AJC is inviting metro Atlantans to an Atlanta Forward community forum on Pre-K sponsored by PNC Bank. Attendance and parking are free, but registration’s required.

PRE-K TURNS 20: WHAT’S NEXT?” takes place Thursday, Oct. 25, from 6:30 p.m.-8:30 p.m. at Georgia Public Broadcasting studios in Midtown. Please join us there.

I’ll be moderating a panel discussion by local and national experts who will discuss in-depth the issues around early childhood learning in this state. For more information and to register, please click here.

This is Maureen again. I just want to add that we have a fantastic panel assembled, including Bright from the Start commissioner Bobby Cagle, noted education researcher Gary Henry, Sesame Workshop’s  Jeanette Betancourt and Georgia pre-k teacher Regina Bowie.

If you are interested in pre-k, please make sure to attend. I will see you there.

–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog

5 comments Add your comment

Whirled Peas

October 20th, 2012
8:34 am

Mz. Downey,

Why don’t you tell people about the Bright from the Start program? Particularly tell them who pays for it and what it provides and what it achieves. It is another “free lunch” program that is putting our country into debtor’s prison. But Mz. Downey loves “free” stuff and will nothing derogatory will be said about this program in the AJC.

Maureen Downey

October 20th, 2012
8:59 am

@Whirled, Almost all Get School readers know that Bright from the Start is the state agency that oversees pre-k and regulates day care and child care centers. The agency — under other names — has been around for a long time. Not sure why you think that this a “program.” Or why it is “free” any more than k- 12 is “free” or roads, police or military are “free.”
It’s essentially a regulatory and education agency. Since Georgia introduced pre-k 20 years ago, many other states have followed suit.

Pride and Joy

October 20th, 2012
9:15 am

Whirled Peas, my children attended a Bright from the Start program. The preK portion was paid for by the GA lottery. I was required to buy the lunches and not allowed to bring food for my children. The after care was expensive.
There aer Brigth from the Start programs with free food. It depends on where the school is.
My children got a hit and miss educcation there. One teacher was kind, nurturing and gave my child a good start; another was outstanding and two others were miserable failures. They were operating illegally and doing some illegal thinsg and when i contacted teh Brgight from the Stasrt headqwuarters, a regulatory agency, they handled it .

say what?

October 20th, 2012
10:44 am

I look forward to attending. Early education is a foundation for success. I want to hear what is being done.
For the first poster, I had one child to attend a Pre-K center, then we paid for hours after the GA Lottery supported hours. It was called after care hours, and I can verify for you it was not free. Our son learned easily and developed social skills that he continues to use now in high school.
Our daughter attended a private christian academy that did not believe in using gambling funds ( lottery funds) to support education. She also did well, and I can tell you once again, it was not free.

Because things are offered by the government does not automatically mean they are free programs. I am unsure where you live and what media source(s) you favor, but labeling everything the government provides as a free waste of time, is part of the macro-level problems that exist in today’s society. Wherever you live, please dont get on those “free” government controlled roads, they are a waste of time.


October 20th, 2012
9:36 pm

I wonder if Whirled Peas drives on “free” roads, checks books out of “free” public libraries, and calls the “free” fire department to put out a fire. Once again, some people on here like to show off their ignorance about the different education programs we have in Georgia. (BTW, my son’s Pre-K has a sign right outside the door that says they’re lottery-funded. Obviously, they must be lying.)