By Alison Caliguire SYRACUSE (NCC News) – The Syracuse City School District provides 1,700 seats in pre-kindergarten classes for three and four year olds, according to the Syracuse City School District website. However, what they don’t provide is a way for those kids to get to school. The Alliance of Communities Transforming Syracuse (ACTS) is working to secure funding for buses to get pre-k students to school.
Pre-k is an important foundation for kids’ education. Dave Babcock, Executive Director of ACTS, said that kids in pre-k get an educational foundation and learn to socialize with their classmates. “If you miss something, its hard to catch up,” said Babcock.
New York State law requires school districts to provide universal pre-k, but it does not provide funding for transportation. In 2015, ACTS successfully pushed for an increase in the number of seats offered in pre-k classes, and increased the number by 350 spots. So there are enough seats for pre-k aged kids in Syracuse City schools, but that does not do much good for kids if they do not have a way to get to school.
ACTS is pushing for the city to dedicate funding to provide buses for four year old pre-k students to get to school.