Governor, First Lady Celebrate Georgia Pre-K’s One Millionth Child

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Governor Perdue's Press Office Press Release:

ATLANTA – Governor Sonny Perdue and First Lady Mary Perdue, along side leaders from Georgia’s Department of Early Care and Learning, kicked-off the One-In-A-Million Celebration today at Sumter County Primary School in Americus. The event celebrated Georgia’s Pre-K Program’s service to its millionth child.

“Mary and I are honored to be part of the Millionth Child Campaign,” said Governor Perdue. “We are proud of the hard work and dedication of the members of Georgia’s Pre-K Program, and we could not have achieved this level of success without their commitment.”

Georgia is the first state in the nation to serve more than one million Pre-K children in a voluntary, universal, lottery-funded program. The Millionth Child Campaign was launched by Mrs. Perdue in July 2009 and emphasizes the importance of a quality learning experience that includes a strong early literacy program.

“Today we are celebrating one million brighter futures and one million individuals with expanded horizons,” Mrs. Perdue said. “This milestone is about expanded opportunities for the next generation of Georgians.”

Millionth Child Campaign activities began last year and will continue through 2010. Activities include reading the Million Book Campaign and the collection of one million pennies. Funds raised by Pre-K programs around the state will be donated to a children’s charity this spring.

“We are thrilled with the outpouring of support that the Millionth Child Celebration has received,” said Bright from the Start Commissioner Holly A. Robinson. “This exciting campaign could not have been successful without our generous partners, outstanding providers and teachers, and most importantly, the one million children who have benefited from Georgia’s Pre-K Program.”

The Georgia Pre-K Program was established in 1993 to provide four-year-old children with high quality preschool experiences. Bright From the Start assumes the responsibilities of the Office of School Readiness, the Georgia Child Care Council, and the Child Care Licensing Division of the Office of Regulatory Services in the Department of Human Resources. Bright from the Start administers Georgia’s Pre-K Program, license center-based and home-based child care, administers federal nutrition programs, houses the Head Start Collaboration Office, oversees the state’s network of resource and referral agencies, administers Child Care and Development Funds (CCDF) quality dollars, and works collaboratively with Smart Start Georgia to blend federal, state, and private dollars to enhance early care and education.

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