Governor Jerry Brown
c/o State Capitol, Suite 1173
Sacramento, CA 95814

Dear Governor Brown,

The Legislature just passed a budget agreement that proposes a multi-year investment in our children. We urge you to sign the budget package as is when it is sent to you. In doing so, you can make a down payment on the future of our youngest learners--the next generation of Californians.

Research shows that low-income 3-year-olds hear, on average, 30 million words fewer than their middle- and higher-income peers. By age 5, they start school two years behind their higher-income peers in language development, and most children who start behind never catch up. With your leadership, California can do better.

The budget proposal on your desk builds on a clear research base and the pathway described by California’s Comprehensive Early Learning Plan. The proposal provides critical support for three fundamentally linked action areas: rates, slots, and quality so that local programs can improve and expand and retain flexibility. It also provides a clear path for further improvements to the system and better outcomes for California's children.

Our organizations representing key business, child care and preschool providers, early education groups, and First 5 urge you to sign the compromise budget package as is on early learning when you receive it, and make a long-term commitment to our children birth to age 5. Please take this critical step towards fulfilling our promise to our youngest learners.


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