One Way the Sequester Is Hurting Children
57,000 preschoolers won’t have access to Head Start programs as a result of the federal budget sequester. Head Start provides early childhood education to poor families, and has been shown to improve pre-school education of participants. Of course, a federal study showed that the early benefits disappeared by the third grade, perhaps because poor kids who get to participate in Head Start still have to go to the same crummy, underfunded schools that their peers attend. Philadelphia alone closed 23 schools earlier this summer and laid off 4,000 school district employees, including all guidance counsellors and assistant principles.
Failing to protect our children from policies and actions that profoundly affect their access to safe and quality education is unjust. Ensuring that the poorest of the poor suffer the most is the worst kind of structural sin and only serves to perpetuate inequality, racism, and cycles of poverty and violence. And yet, construction continues on a giant new prison just north of Philadelphia, ensuring that the school to prison pipeline remains firmly intact.
The Coalition on Human Needs have published weekly impact reports since sequester cuts went into effect.
Lord, have mercy.
Learn about biblical foundations for economic justice and start spreading the word in your community that making right policy choices today is one important way to protect our children’s future.