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Letter: Applause for state effort to fix pre-kindergarten

Mayor Bill de Blasio visits a Pre-K class

Mayor Bill de Blasio visits a Pre-K class at the Brooklyn Chinese American Association Early Childhood Education Center in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, Tuesday, May 27, 2014. Photo Credit: Newsday / Linda Rosier

Three cheers for State Education Commissioner MaryEllen Elia for her efforts to clean up the funding mishmas`h [“Access to Pre-K: Elusive on LI,” News, March 20].

I own a quality, low-cost learning center in Brentwood, one of the largest local school districts. While I favor early childhood education, some of the “free” programs offer many variations. Some have 20 to 28 4-year-old children per class, with one teacher and an assistant. That ratio is too high.

Some educators are certified for kindergarten through sixth grade, but not specifically for early childhood education.

I hope the new state focus will help small schools like mine that have reputations for smaller classes and developmentally appropriate, hands-on learning.

Chris Walerius, East Islip

Editor’s note: The writer owns the Learning Adventures Children’s Center.