Former Governors Visit Erie to Push Pre-K Education - WICU12 HD WSEE Erie, PA News, Sports, Weather, Events

Former Governors Visit Erie to Push Pre-K Education

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Two former Pennsylvania Governors, Ed Rendell and Mark Schweiker, started their Mondays off in Erie.

The Governor's held a rally at the Erie County United Way to push a state-wide campaign to expand pre-k education.

Before taking to the podium, Governors Rendell and Schweiker spent some time in the classroom.

The "Pre-K for PA" campaign stresses the importance of high quality pre-k education for all children.

"How you treat 3 and 4 year olds will have everything to do with how they fare in an academic sense in grades 3, 4 and so on," said Schweiker.  "There is a direct connection between what goes on when they're age 3 and what they'll do later in life, let no one tell you otherwise," he said.

In Erie County, there are more than 4,000 3 and 4 year olds, who are not enrolled in pre-k, primarily because of financial reasons.

Ron Dinicola and Nick Scott, Jr. are chairs of the Northwestern PA division of "Pre-K for PA".

They want to make sure all kids in Erie County have the means to succeed.

"Their social skills are being developed, their language skills are being developed and that's a time when we need to have them in a program that gives them high quality pre-k education," said DiNicola.

"The evidence is there, the research is there, now it's just a matter of getting funding so that these children all get an opportunity," said Scott.

Other states have already made successful pre-k investments.

Governors Rendell and Schweiker hope to do the same for children in Pennsylvania.
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