Policymakers from both sides of the aisle continued a trend of boosting state investments in pre-k programs during the 2015-16 fiscal year, with 32 states and the District of Columbia combining for a 12 percent increase over the previous year.

State Pre-K Funding for 2015-16 Fiscal Year: National trends in state preschool funding, a new analysis from Education Commission of the States, highlights an increase in these early learning programs for the fourth-straight year. The report includes several state examples and an overview of the pre-k programs they have in place.

“This continuing bump in pre-k program funding is a promising sign for the academic success of our youngest students,” said Emily Parker, the report’s co-author. “Increasing the number of students in high-quality preschool programs is a way to set young learners on a path to a secure economic future and stable workforce.”

Key highlights from the report:

  • Total state funding for preschool programs increased by $755 million in the 2014-15 fiscal year to a total of nearly $7 billion.
  • Support for preschool transcends partisan labels, with 22 states with Republican governors and 10 states with Democratic governors (plus the District of Columbia) increasing funding for pre-k programs in 2015-16.
  • Five states still do not invest state funds into preschool programs – Idaho, Montana, New Hampshire, South Dakota and Wyoming.

For questions, contact Education Commission of the States Communications Specialist Brady Delander at bdelander@ecs.org or (303) 299.3622.

Tweet this report!

  • Check out the national trends in state preschool funding here: bit.ly/20qJXtc #ece #earlyed @edcommission
  • State funding for preschool programs increased by $755 million in 2014-15. More from @edcommission bit.ly/20qJXtc #earlyed
  • Find out where your state stands in preschool funding from @edcommission new report: bit.ly/20qJXtc #ece #edpolicy

Related Education Commission of the States resources that you’ll find useful:


 PUBLISHED: January 27, 2016

 AUTHOR(S): Unspecified

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 EDUCATION LEVEL: Unspecified

 STATE(S): Nationwide

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