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Investing in Early Childhood Education


Early childhood education brings high returns for the community. Susan Nelson, director of Louisiana Partnership for Children and Families, talks with KEDM about raising funding for early childhood education.

Nelson is making moves in legislative sessions to improve the funding and attention paid to programs focusing on increasing the mental, physical and emotional health of children. Louisiana gives no funding to the Childcare Assistance Program. If the program were to receive money from the state of Louisiana, more families would have access to high-quality childcare. When children and families have access to higher quality childcare centers, the chances of that child being better equipped for life and school is very high.

Throughout the South, state-funded childcare is very low, but Louisiana lacks behind states like Mississippi and Texas. Susan Nelson says better early childhood education leads to a lower need for healthcare later in life. Returns on early childhood education investments have been measured to be 18%. As such, Susan Nelson continues to advocate for Louisiana Partnership for Children and Families and Early Childhood Services and Support. Time to Talk is produced with the Children's Coalition for Northeast Louisiana and BayouLife Magazine.