Gov. Bob Riley (R) • Feb. 6
Gov. Riley urged lawmakers to expand the state’s prekindergarten program and protect some of his K-12 initiatives from budget cuts. The second-term Republican said he would propose a $20 million increase for First Class, the state’s voluntary pre-K program, which now enrolls 4 percent of the state’s 4-year-olds. That would be enough to triple participation in the statewide program, up from its current level of 2,400. With the state in the midst of a budget crunch, Gov. Riley wants lawmakers to maintain funding for his initiatives aimed at increasing primary students’ reading ability, boosting secondary students’ mathematics skills and scientific knowledge, and expanding online learning.
A version of this article appeared in the February 13, 2008 edition of Education Week