A Democratic senator has introduced an amendment to a rewritten version of the No Child Left Behind Act that would fund universal pre-kindergarten.
According to Sen. Bob Casey’s office, the amendment, the Strong Start for America’s Children Act of 2015, would fund universal pre-kindergarten by “ending the corporate inversions tax loophole.”
Under the legislation, companies would need to be 50 percent foreign-owned rather than the current 20 percent in order “to escape U.S. tax jurisdiction.”
“Investing in pre-k is good for our nation’s children and for our nation’s economy,” Casey, D-Pa., said in a statement:
“One of the best steps we can take in the long run to boost wages is to invest in early learning so that every child has a fair shot to achieve his or her dreams. The research into the benefits of early learning is overwhelming. If children learn more early in life they earn more later in life. This amendment is an opportunity to invest in our children and the long-term foundation of our economy while ending an egregious tax loophole that both parties agree needs to go.”
Lindsey Burke, an education expert at The Heritage Foundation, argues that “an expansion of preschool subsidies or programs as part of a reauthorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act would further entangle Washington in the education and care of the youngest Americans.”
“Moreover, data on child care use in the United States show that between two-thirds and three-fourths of 4-year-old children are already enrolled in some form of preschool, suggesting that a new federal subsidy would simply offset the costs for middle-income and upper-income families,” Burke said.
According to a press release from Casey’s office, the senator has introduced a universal pre-kindergarten bill in each Congress since 2008.