- Former Texas House Speaker Joe Straus is co-chairing the Early Matters committee.
On Monday, local leaders announced the creation of a committee to prep for the November 2020 election to keep the city's full-day preschool initiative going. Voters will decide at the polls whether to reauthorize the eighth-of-a-cent sales tax used to create the program in 2012.
Former Texas House Speaker Joe Straus and local businessman Peter J. Holt are co-chairing the committee, called Early Matters. Business, education and philanthropic leaders round out the 12-member group.
Early Matters will examine best practices around the state and country to determine the future of Pre-K 4 SA and recommend ballot language for the upcoming election. The committee also will study gaps in educational access facing children up to the age of 8.
Voters narrowly approved then-mayor Julian Castro's Pre-K 4 SA initiative seven years ago with business groups, educational advocates and other top officials rallying behind the proposal. Earlier this year, the Texas Legislature set aside funding for full-day pre-kindergarten for qualifying 4-year-olds.
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