Governor Eric Holcomb held a ceremonial signing at the Statehouse Monday for the bill to expand the state’s pre-kindergarten pilot program. House Enrolled Act 1004 grows the On My Way Pre-K program from five Indiana counties to 20.
The bill also increases the annual funding for the program by $10 million. The office of Representative Holli Sullivan (R-78), who co-authored the bill, says it will double the amount of low-income families who could benefit from the program.
Earlier this month, Holcomb announced the additional 15 counties to be included in the program. They include Bartholomew, DeKalb, Delaware, Elkhart, Floyd, Grant, Harrison, Howard, Kosciusko, Madison, Marshall, Monroe, St. Joseph, Tippecanoe and Vigo counties.
The program began in 2014 in Allen, Lake, Marion, Jackson and Vanderburgh counties.
"Expanding high-quality early learning opportunities for more low-income children and rural communities is key to helping close the achievement gap, and has been a long-term goal of House Republicans," said House Speaker Brian Bosma (R-88). "This new law marks a responsible investment in our existing pre-K pilot program and reflects our strong commitment to giving Indiana’s most vulnerable the best chance at success in kindergarten and beyond."
You can learn more about On My Way Pre-K and eligibility requirements by clicking here.