For the fourth straight legislative session, the North Dakota Head Start Association worked with legislative allies in presenting a funding bill to the North Dakota legislature. This year HB1356 proposed providing $6,175,000 for the biennium to accommodate the large waiting lists and other funding gaps for low-income children. HB1356 was hog housed in the House education committee and turned into a early childhood interim study to be conducted by the Department of Public Instruction with no funding. Through many twists and turns during the session, the bill was defeated in the House by a vote of 34-59. The session ended, once again, without any funding for Head Start.
|photo courtesy of National Head Start Association|
Meanwhile, Federal sequestration was looming and took affect on March 1, 2013, and the first rounds of cuts for Head Start will occur on July 1, 2013. The effects of sequestration on Head Starts across ND will leave behind over 160 families who currently benefit from the program.
Head Start in the state is hurting which negatively impacts the most at risk children. North Dakotans need to speak up to change this negative impact. Tell Congress and the President to end sequestration NOW.