Four mayors are focusing their time in office on education. Because of that, they're touring each other's cities to learn new ideas.
Former NBA star, and now the mayor of Sacramento, Kevin Johnson, walked the halls of Pre-K 4 SA's South Side model education center Friday. He told a panel consisting of San Antonio Mayor Julián Castro, Pre-K 4 SA CEO Kathy Bruck, and City Manager Sheryl Sculley, that he's jealous of San Antonio.
Tracy Mayon and her daughter, Haylee, pose together after the annual State of the City address. Mayor Julian Castro invited the mother/daughter to be his guests because Haylee attends Pre-K 4 SA in its inaugural year.
Update (4:40 p.m.): Mayor Julián Castro and state Sen. Leticia Van De Putte joined Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis in San Antonio to support the rollout of the her pre-K campaign platform.
The three drummed up support from lawmakers, teachers and parents at San Antonio’s Amando Leal Middle School.
Van De Putte, who is running for lieutenant governor, said that she and Davis intend to make sure every business gets quality employees who have a great start when it comes to education.
The 82nd winter meeting of the U.S. Conference of Mayors is underway in Washington, D.C. San Antonio Mayor Julian Castro traveled to the gathering after being asked to speak about early childhood education and how San Antonio implemented the Pre-K 4 SA initiative.
Castro spoke during the Childhood Obesity Prevention Awards Luncheon.
Mayor Julián Castro reads to children at the Northside model education center of Pre-K 4 SA following the announcement that McDonald's is donating 3,000 books to children in the program, and 7,000 overall to students in San Antonio.
Happy Meals at McDonald's this month will feature books instead of toys and to kick off a month of literacy, local owners and operators of the fast-food chain donated thousands of books to San Antonio's new Pre-K 4 SA program.
Local McDonald's owners and operators like Ned and Fabiola Stagg are giving 3,000 books to the program's children, and 7,000 to kids at schools throughout the city.
Pre-K 4 SA CEO Kathy Bruck updated the board Tuesday on the struggle to fill the two education centers to capacity. So far only 537 of the 700 slots are filled -- 229 students are enrolled at the Southside center, and 308 are enrolled in the North Side center.
Bruck believes some families will be better served with centers closer to their homes on the East and West Sides, which open next year.
She also said it's partly because it is a brand new program that many families still don't know about.
When Pre-K 4 SA opens its doors for the first time ever, there will be no school bell like there might be in a traditional school setting, but there will be a lot of excitement.
Pre-K 4 SA, which started as Mayor Julián Castro’s Brainpower Initiative, has been nine months in the making. Voters approved the measure in November with nearly 54 percent of the vote, which officially raised the city’s sales tax to the state cap of 8.25 percent.
The sales tax revenue will generate $31 million each year for the program.