LAUP Touts the Benefits of Preschool Among Legislators
As you know, a lot's been happening lately in the state capitol, with legislators debating how to best deal with a multi-billion-dollar deficit that could have a dire impact on programs and services in Los Angeles County, including LAUP.
Gov. Jerry Brown recently signed AB 99 into law, calling for the state to shift $1 billion in Proposition 10 money away from First 5 commissions across the state without voter approval. Our primary funder, First 5 LA, plans to challenge this action in court, as it stands to lose $424 million. If money is lost, LAUP funding from First 5 LA could be affected.
On May 3-4, LAUP staff and Parent Ambassadors traveled to Sacramento and met with 23 legislators or their staff who represent various districts in Los Angeles County. During these meetings, the Parent Ambassadors were especially effective in touting the benefits of early childhood education, and how LAUP preschools had benefited their children in preparing them for school and life. They noted all children deserve the same good start in life.
We also informed lawmakers about LAUP's investments in their districts, and the fact that thousands of kids in their communities receive a quality preschool education at little or no cost to their families.
This trip was very timely, because now, more than ever, we need to keep legislators informed about LAUP at a time when the state is grappling with difficult decisions revolving around the budget that could affect our funding.
"Overall, our messages were embraced, and I feel good about the support we received," said Celia C. Ayala, Ph.D., CEO. "We will continue to be in close contact with legislators to protect the interests of the children in Los Angeles County."