The county is now more than halfway through year one of a $3.6 million annual commitment for its Early Childhood Education and Development Fund. Commissioner Jasmine Beach-Ferrara, who chairs the committee that oversees the fund, says the initial investment is already paying dividends.
While more than 1,500 Buncombe children received care through state-funded vouchers that reduce the costs for working parents, hundreds remain on the waiting list for assistance.
UNCA hosts its ninth Human Rights Film Festival and the Grail screens a documentary on childhood toxic stress.
“Our local businesses rely on quality child care — many can’t do their job without it. Without safe, affordable options to care for their young children, parents may leave their jobs, which costs businesses in recruitment, retraining and the loss of skilled workers.”
An diverse and influential group looks to incrementally implement universal preschool in Buncombe County. Xpress takes an in-depth look at the organization, logistics and potential costs behind the effort.
“We have heard little during this campaign season on early learning —an issue that everyone from top military, business and law enforcement leaders say is essential for our future security and prosperity.”