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Educators Meet In Kansas City For Early Childhood Education Summit

CC: Lochoaymca

Educators, politicians, doctors and clergy all gathered in Kansas City Monday to discuss early childhood development.

Almost everyone agrees Pre-K education is crucial. The mantra for early educators is, "Talk, read, play."

Before they start kindergarten, teachers say, children need a lot of interaction with adults. Research shows that, on average, lower income children start school knowing 900 fewer words than more affluent children.

Kansas City Mayor Sly James says making up that difference is especially important in the Kansas City Public Schools where achievement has been elusive.

“And one of the best ways we can catch up is to educate more of our 3-year-olds and 4-year-olds and to teach parents at the very moment of birth and even before about the quality and the need for talk, reading and playing with their children every day," he said.

The Kansas City Public Schools says it has 1,078 early learning slots at seven locations.

Next week the district says it will open the Richardson Community School.

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