The Winston-Salem Journal article, “Big goals, big hurdles face Winston-Salem’s future,” about the economic decline of Winston-Salem over the past 15 years offers evidence why our community must invest in early childhood education now. Developing a system for universal pre-K is a long-term strategy for addressing the growing problem of poverty in Forsyth County.

Family Services’ programs, like Early Head Start and Head Start, place a child’s entire family in a position to become self-sufficient. As children receive quality developmental care and education, parents are able to sustain consistent work schedules, earn a degree, and obtain higher paying jobs. Studies show that economically vulnerable children who have access to high quality pre-kindergarten programs are less likely to be retained in a grade, less likely to be referred to special education, and far less likely to go to jail. They are likely to graduate high school and attend and graduate college–all leading to higher earning.