Hearings are underway in Sacramento to evaluate more than a dozen legislative proposals to improve access to quality early learning for California’s children and families.
Three bills (AB 123, AB 124, and AB 125) introduced by Assemblymember Kevin McCarty of Sacramento are getting a particularly positive reception. These bills include plans to expand access to pre-k for 3 and 4-year-olds, starting with low and middle-income families. The bills would also increase reimbursement rates for childcare and preschool providers in an effort to increase educator wages and improve program quality. The median hourly pay for preschool teachers in California ($16 in 2017) is significantly lower than that of a kindergarten ($38 per hour) or elementary school teacher ($45 per hour).
Your Voice is Important
It is easy to let your assemblymember and senator know you care about early learning funding via a short email. (At the bottom of this article is sample language you might want to include in your email.)
The momentum for additional child care funding is strong, but lawmakers would be particularly motivated by letters of support from you, the professionals who actually deliver quality care and learning to their constituents.
Who Represents You in Sacramento?
To find your assembly member and senator and their email addresses, have a look below at the list of the zip codes in each assembly and senate district. Or, you can enter your address at findyourrep.gov.
Phil Ting: District 19
Represents the following zip codes: 94014, 94014–94017, 94151, 94103, 94117, 94109, 94115, 94121, 94118, 94122, 94116, 94123, 94112, 94134, 94127, 94129, 94132
Kevin Mullin: District 22
Represents the following zip codes: 94002, 94404, 94005, 94010–94012, 94404, 94030, 94044, 94045, 94066, 94067, 94096, 94098, 94070, 94071, 94401–94404, 94497, 94080, 94083, 94099, 94080, 94083, 94061, 94062, 94063, 94064, 940659
Marc Berman: District 24
Represents the following zip codes: 94027, 94303, 94019, 94025–94029, 94028, 94061–94062, 95014, 95015, 94022–94024, 94035, 94039–94043, 94301, 94303, 94304, 94306, 94085–94090
Jerry Hill: Senate District 13
Represents the following cities: Atherton, Belmont, Brisbane, Burlingame, East Palo Alto, El Granada, Emerald Lake Hills, Foster City, Half Moon Bay, Highlands-Baywood Park, Hillsborough, Ladera, La Honda, Loma Mar, Menlo Park, Millbrae, Montara, Moss Beach, North Fair Oaks, Pacifica, Pescadero, Portola Valley, Redwood City, San Carlos, San Bruno, San Mateo, South San Francisco, West Menlo Park, Woodside, Los Altos, Los Altos Hills, Loyola, Mountain View, Palo Alto, Stanford, Sunnyvale
Scott Wiener: Senate District 11
Represents the following cities: San Francisco, Broadmoor, Colma, Daly City, South San Francisco
Examples of Email Language you can Use
Your emailed letter to your assembly member or senator does not have to be long or detailed to be effective. We’ve provided suggested language (below) that you might like to include in an email expressing your support for legislation that increases funding for early care and learning.
Dear Assembly member (Berman, Mullin or Ting)
Dear Senator (Hill or Weiner)
Introduce yourself, for example:
I am an early childhood educator in (name of town); or
I own a childcare business in (name of town).
The reason you are writing, for example:
I am writing to urge you to continue supporting legislation that will improve child care quality, support higher wages for educators, and increase access to educator professional development opportunities.
Your personal experience in the early learning profession as it applies to need for support and funding, for example:
I find my work in the early childhood profession to be very gratifying because I am contributing to the foundation from which individual children can go on to experience academic and life success. The field of early learning and childcare is, however, difficult to sustain financially, particularly in high-cost areas like San Mateo County. As a result, there is a severe shortage of early learning educators in our county, leaving many parents unable to find quality care for their children.
Please continue to be a leader on behalf of children and the adults who care for them during their earliest years. Investing in young children is an investment in our economic and social future.