"Speak Out" is an expression of opinion from the Editorial Board of WBTV, and is presented by General Manager, Scott Dempsey.
If you live in Mecklenburg County, by now you know your taxes are going up.They are not going up to build new schools, increase teacher wages or create new jobs, but they are going up to give some disadvantaged four year olds a leg up on their education.
Your increased taxes will create several new PreK classrooms for about 600 kids.This hike in your taxes is the beginning of providing Universal PreK in Mecklenburg County.The goal is - this assignment will be accomplished in several years.
Research shows if kids start early in their education - they will not get behind and will more than likely finish high school. There is also research to show if kids have an effective teacher starting in kindergarten through 3rd grade - they will do well in school.
Now you can pick which research you believe - but we say kids can go a long way in life if they know the place they live - invests in their education.
We commend county commissioners for being bold and taking a stab at improving economic mobility in our area. Charlotte is 50 out of 50 cities when it comes to getting out of poverty and we believe education is the weapon to break that cycle of poverty for so many families.
We say with increased taxes there should be accountability. That's why we are pleased the county will track each student who will receive free PreK - so it can determine if you ...the taxpayer... are getting your money's worth.