hitthatswitch / flickr

A Missouri Republican wants to require preschools and daycare centers to tell parents if there are other children attending who have not been vaccinated against measles or other illnesses. 

An Outbreak of Shigellosis at Boone County Preschools

Feb 9, 2015
File / KBIA

Over the past two weeks 25 cases of shigellosis were reported to the Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services. Spokesperson Andrea Waner said for the past five years the average annual report of shigellosis was six cases.

Shigellosis, commonly called shigella, is a bacterial infection of the intestines that can cause diarrhea, vomiting, stomach cramping and fever. Waner said it can take one to seven days for the first sign of symptoms and can last from four to seven days.

Photo courtesy of the Office of Gov. Jay Nixon

  Governor Nixon says high quality preschool programs are a great investment for the state, but continues to hold back money he asked for last year.

Nixon said holding those increases he proposed in January of last year is necessary to keep the budget balanced.

Joplin Schools / Facebook

Some child-care providers in Joplin are upset with a proposal to expand the size of the Joplin School District's early childhood program.

District administrators want to build a $14 million early childhood center that could double enrollment in the program. They say the expansion would meet a community need and allow the district to prepare students for kindergarten.

Shardayyy / Flickr

Studies have shown that students who went to preschool have higher rates of achievement later in school. It's also believed that preschool has a positive effect on children’s social and emotional development.

But the Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education has identified several areas of the state where families don’t have access to quality preschools. The state has applied for a grant through the U.S. Department of Education to expand the state’s program in these high-need areas. Missouri is competing with 16 other states for the Preschool Development grant, which will be awarded by the end of December.

KBIA’s Hope Kirwan sat down with Stacey Preis, Assistant Commissioner for the Office of Early and Extended Learning, to talk about Missouri’s need to expand preschool education.

Springfield camps get kids ready for Kindergarten

Jul 9, 2014
Michele Skalicky / KSMU

This week at nine Springfield elementary schools, kids are making friends, learning social skills and getting ready to start their formal education.  They’re attending Kindergarten Camp, hosted by the Community Partnership of the Ozarks.  KSMU's Michele Skalicky reports.

The camp started Monday and goes through Friday at Bingham, Bissett, Boyd, Bowerman, Robberson, Watkins, Weaver, Westport and York Elementary Schools. 

Missouri Department of Tourism

Missouri senators have endorsed legislation that could lead to the development of a preschool rating system by private or nonprofit groups.

The bill given initial approval Wednesday comes two years after a law was enacted barring the creation of a preschool rating system by the state, higher education institutions or quasi-governmental entities.

The new legislation leaves intact the prohibition on government involvement but would allow publicly funded preschools to participate in a rating system run by a private or nonprofit group.

children in head start classroom
Photo provided by Missouri Association for Community Action

Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon is proposing $30 million of additional state spending for early childhood education programs.

taylor.a / FLICKR

Southwest Play School is the first parent-owned and operated preschool in Columbia and has been educating children for almost 50 years. Sharen Garrett started teaching at Southwest 19 years ago. She’s been teaching her whole life, and now plans to retire. Garrett teaches at the co-op weekdays, while parent-volunteers work alongside the children for a set number of days each semester.

“The needs for co-ops have changed," Garrett said. "I just love what I do. I love the children, I love their parents. You know it’d be terrible to go to job every day you didn’t love what you did.”

Watch the show and join the conversation on theIntersection website.

Eden Pictures / Flickr

Public schools could receive state money for preschool programs under a new proposal by a Missouri senator. But budget concerns could diminish its prospects of passage.

Sen. Joseph Keaveny filed two bills Thursday that would fund preschool programs through the state formula that already distributes money for K-12 education. One version would provide state aid for all preschool students; the other would pay only for lower income students.

Republican Senate leaders said Thursday that they like Keaveny's idea but it's unlikely the state can afford it.