To the Editor:
While I was pleased to see in the April 9 story by Ethan Hartley that the number of kids in Rhode Island who are living in poverty has gone down, we know that there is much more work to be done.
That’s why I am so grateful to Elizabeth Burke Bryant and Rhode Island Kids Count for their outstanding work advocating on behalf of children for the last 25 years. I was honored to be invited to speak at their breakfast last week, where they released their 25th annual 2019 Rhode Island Kids Count Factbook, which will help state policymakers as they seek to improve the lives of children.
As Elizabeth and Governor Gina Raimondo both said, one way we can continue to make a difference for kids in Rhode Island is to expand early childhood education. It’s the best way to break the cycle of poverty.
That’s why my organization, Save the Children Action Network, supports the governor’s proposal to provide universal pre-kindergarten for all 4-year-olds in Rhode Island. Ensuring universal pre-K will set up our kids for success, not just in school but in life.
Children may only be 20 percent of our population, but they are 100 percent of our future. Investments in our kids are the best ones we as a country can make.
Mark K. Shriver
CEO, Save the Children Action Network