Minnesota House Democrats today rolled out their one-time $500 million education plan for the legislative session. At a press conference this morning House Speaker Melissa Hortman said, “We believe that all of our children deserve a great start in their lives. We know that Minnesota has one of the worst opportunity gaps in the nation and we know that too many families are struggling to find affordable childcare.” Hortman says the package of bills aims to close those opportunity gaps for the state’s youngest learners. House Majority Leader Ryan Winkler said, “if we do not act, whether you are from Little Falls or Eagle Lake or Minneapolis or St. Paul or Golden Valley, the future of our state is going to be harmed significantly and families across this state are not going to be able to have children and support them like we would expect everyone to do in this economy.” Proposed spending in the plan includes $190 million on early learning scholarships; $190 million to assist with childcare assistance; $60 million to fund voluntary pre-kindergarten across the state; $30 million for a home visiting program: and $22 million in provider support grants and loans. . At this point, the bill package has no Republican co-authors.
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