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STUDY: One In Four Kids Not Ready For Kindergarten In Northeast Indiana

October 9th, 2014

News Coverage:

STUDY: One In Four Kids Not Ready For Kindergarten In Northeast Indiana (VIDEO)

By Rachelle Spence - 21Alive

October 9, 2014 Updated Oct 9, 2014 at 5:54 PM EDT

FORT WAYNE, Ind. (21Alive) -- Big changes are needed for Northeast Indiana to meet its education goals. The Big Goal Collaborative released a report today that shows an alarming trend in local education.

According to the data, "by the year 2025, more than 60% of jobs in the U.S. will require a post-secondary degree or high-quality credential."

Currently, that's the level of education only 37% of Hoosiers living in Northeast Indiana have.

Those behind the group say the problem can be traced back to before elementary school.

According to the data, one in every four children are not ready to start kindergarten.

Last school year, in Northeast Indiana, 282 kindergartners were held back - costing $1.3 million.

"We're looking at kids dropping out, failing in school, participating in the criminal justice system, going on welfare. We need to stop that cycle," said John Peirce with the United Way of Allen County.

A new pre-K pilot program is scheduled to be launched in 2015. Allen County is one of five counties to receive the funding.

The program will help prepare low-income, 4-year olds for kindergarten.

"This is not about improving the work that's going on within our schools, they're already doing fantastic work. This is really about how the community can rally around them," said Director of the Big Goal Collaborative, Ryan Twiss.