Tallahassee, FL - Gubernatorial candidate and State Senator Annette Taddeo (D-40) revealed her ambitious plans for pre-K programs in Florida ahead of the 2022 legislative session on Wednesday in a press conference to discuss her newly-filed SB 1922.
Sen. Taddeo filed the measure alongside Democrat Rep. Kamia Brown, who filed the House companion bill, HB 1417.
Senator Taddeo added to her Pre-K expansion remarks, saying, "if it's terrible, we should be expecting to hear bills to expand Pre-K to a full day, to truly invest in child education, which is a big part of my campaign that we need to get our priorities straight."
When asked by The Floridian's publisher, Javier Manjarres, on a separate occasion about lowering the pre-school enrollment age to 2 and 3-year-olds, Taddeo responded with, "if we expanded it to more kids, then that would be great."
As noted in a Florida Senate press release, Taddeo listed Pre-K policy changes as her biggest legislative priority this year.
"Florida should expand Pre-K from three hours a day to a full day. Research has shown that if we wait until kindergarten to start teaching children basic ABCs and numbers, it’s too late. Investing in early childhood education will be hugely beneficial to our children’s future and our economy. In addition, this will allow parents the ability to work without worrying about the increasing cost of childcare," said Taddeo.
Taddeo said that she would be open to seeing the existing daily allowance given to each pre-school child increase, saying that Democrats would be open to it.
The Floridian later caught up with Senator Taddeo to ger her reaction to Governor DeSantis' (R-FL) 'State of the State address, in which she called it a "political speech," and refused to call it a legitimate State of the State Address.
"If it was a State of the State, we'd be talking about affordable housing, we'd be talking about how to really tackle the insurance crisis we have, we'd be talking about pre-k education, which by the way now we know because last year we passed a bill to make sure we measured the actual readiness of these kids and we found out that it's terrible," Senator Taddeo.
Javier Manjarres contributed to this story.