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Chamber Adds Early Childhood Development To Big 5

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There’s been a push in the past couple of years to improve both the access to and quality of pre-kindergarten education.

Now the Greater Kansas City Chamber of Commerce will jump into that effort and add early childhood development to its Big Five initiative.

Chamber President Roshann Parris says after meeting for months with area school superintendents, education researchers and, of course, business people, members decided that the best place to put their considerable clout and resources was in pre-K education.

The chamber wants to make every child in the Kansas City area ready for kindergarten on his or her first day of school.

“Our goal is to collectively harness the resources, not only intellectual resources and strategic resources and human resources, but certainly eventually some financial resources as well,” Parris says.

Research shows that high quality pre-school improves graduation rates, future earnings and keeps kids out of jail.

Parris says the Chamber doesn't know exactly how it will tackle its goal. The first thing it will do, she says, is to review all the data and come up with a plan in the coming months.

Being Kindergarten-ready replaces bringing a world class animal health symposium to Kansas City on the chamber’s Big Five list.

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