SAN ANTONIO -- A team of former mayors joined current Mayor Julian Castro in front of city hall making another pitch to voters headed to the polls for early voting and the group is hoping for support of Pre-K 4 SA.
According to the city’s website, the program is a full day education for four year olds meeting certain state and local requirements for enrollment based on their low income status. The program would also offer reduced tuition, for some families based on their financial ability to pay. City Council would appoint an 11 member board to govern the corporation for education.
The initiative would cover an eight-year period before voters would need to approve it again in November 2020.
If Pre-K 4 SA passes, the city would build four education Excellence Centers in four different quadrants of the city. They would be located near major highways and public transportation routes.
According to city leaders, the program would offer extended day care, and parents must sign a contract agreeing to participate in the learning process for their children.
"It's better for the child and allows the parents to work," said Castro.
But opponents with the local Tea Party disagree.
"First of all, putting a four year old in school, all day, not sure that's wise. That's a very, very long day," insisted George Rodriguez.
Rodriguez said the long day and cost of implementing the program are just two reasons he is against Pre-K 4 SA.
The plan calls for a increase to the sales tax of 1/8 percent which translate to about $7.81 cents per family, based on the city’s calculations.
The pre-school program is expected to generate $31 million dollars annually.
Early voting ends November 2nd and the general election is November 6th.