Mayor Jeff Griggs – Lexington, TN – On Early Education, PreK and Child Care

Jeff Griggs, Mayor of Lexington, TN was a welcome supporter at this year’s TQEE Day on the Hill. He joined dozens from across the state advocating for legislation that will provide our children with improved early education. Mayor Griggs echoes our passion for equipping Tennessee’s youngest learners with the strong foundation they need for future academic success.

Child Care

A lot of people don’t realize that transportation and child care is such a major thing to a lot of families that are really struggling to get by, so we need to make it accessible for them.” – Mayor Griggs on how child care impacts families and why it is essential that we invest in expanding quality child care programs that cater to rural at-risk communities. Parents are our children’s first teachers. We should ensure parents get the help they need to support their children’s learning in and out of school.

Early Childhood Education

It makes sense that children who come to school lacking the skills they need to be successful struggle in later years. Improving early education so every child has a strong foundation is the key to strengthening Tennessee’s public education system. Mayor Griggs talked to us about the importance of advocating for policies that will expand PreK and improve early childhood education at this year’s Day on the Hill.

PreK

Researchers have confirmed that Tennessee children who participated in Tennessee’s Voluntary PreK Program (VPK) are better prepared for Kindergarten. Moreover, the children maintain academic advantage over their non-VPK peers through 3rd grade as long as their K-3 teachers and schools are effective. The expansion of TN-VPK to rural communities will provide more Tennessee children with a strong foundation in school. Mayor Griggs agrees, noting how our state’s rural areas are often the most negatively impacted by a lack of quality PreK programs.

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