Some Mississippi parents are learning a new routine when they drop their kids off at day care centers that are taking part in a new pilot program aimed at combating fraud and saving the state money.
Under the program, the state scans parents' fingerprints to capture biometric information, and that information is turned into a number. Then, at a day care center, parents dropping off or picking up their kids put their fingers on a pad, and a small keyboard records the exact time a child is checked in or out.
City staff members are busy putting together the program that will offer full day pre-kindergarten to thousands of four year olds next year.
The building selections are underway that will serve as the model education centers, the finances are being worked out, and perhaps the most important task is assembling the board that will oversee the program.
At Thursday’s city council meeting, Mayor Julián Castro said San Antonio is doing something it has never done before.
As part of Virginia's waiver to opt out of mandates set out in the No Child Left Behind law, the state has created a controversial new set of education goals that are higher for white and Asian kids than for blacks, Latinos and students with disabilities.
Virginia Democratic state Sen. Donald McEachin first read about the state's new performance goals for schoolchildren in a newspaper editorial.
Employers reported that more than 2,500 jobs go unfilled, so they turned to the Alamo Colleges, who are teaming up with Workforce Solutions in partnership with the San Antonio Manufacturers Association for the "Just in Time" program. Students participate in a 90-day class, with 30 days of on the job training.
Early returns had Pre-K 4 SA in a dead heat in early voting numbers, but votes supporting the measure gained ground as the election-day results were tallied.
The early education tax increase passed with 53 percent of the vote; early vote totals showed votes supporting the proposition only 87 votes ahead of votes opposing.
The crowd at the Castro election headquarters was jubilant as Mayor Julián Castro said early in the evening that he believed the measure would pass, “and I think San Antonians have made the right decision tonight.”
Inside the Fenwick Elementary School cafeteria, elections officials set up a table with ballots ready to hand out to the youngest of the nation’s patriots, student voters. Here the elementary children cast their ballots in a mock election, while in the nearby gym, adults are doing the real thing.
"I firmly believe that we have fought to have the right to vote and to choose our representatives,” said Dr. Tambrey Ozuna, who is the principal at Fenwick. “And I want my students to take that message with them when they get older. I want them to have that instilled in them."
San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro and District 4 Councilman Rey Saldaña are going the distance for a program they say is going to change the educational trajectory of the city.
Starting from Lions Field Park on Broadway, children from the George Gervin Academy helped the two start the run, where 5,700 of their steps represent the number of San Antonio’s four year olds that are not currently served by a quality, full-day pre-kindergarten program.