FAIRFIELD COUNTY,Conn. -- Preschool children in both Bridgeport and Stamford will reap the rewards of state grant money slated to make classroom improvements.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy announced that the State Bond Commission was expected to approve nearly $1.6 million in grants on Monday. Grants under this latest round of funding will be used as follows:
- Bridgeport: $164,000 for two classroom renovations, and furniture and equipment for four classrooms
- Stamford: $75,000 for bathroom installation, HVAC upgrades, classroom furniture, instructional equipment, and playground equipment
?The funding comes as part of the latest round of capital improvement grants under the Smart Start program, a 10-year initiative designed to expand access to pre-K in public schools, particularly among low-income children. Funds for the initiative come through a combination of state bonding for capital improvements and resources from the Tobacco Settlement Fund for operations.
The first Smart Start classrooms are set to open this fall in 14 communities throughout the state, providing an additional 416 3- and 4-year-olds with high-quality preschool.
“If we are going to maintain our record high graduation rates and continue to close the achievement gap, then we need to prepare equip our kids with the tools they need to succeed from Day 1,” Malloy said. “By increasing high-quality early education opportunities for preschoolers – regardless of their family’s income or economic upbringing – and partnering with public school districts, our Smart Start initiative is helping to improve outcomes for all children.”
Other towns receiving funds include Clinton, Coventry, East Hartford, East Haven, Enfield, Killingly, Norwich, Plainfield, Wallingford and Windsor.
For more information about Smart Start, visit the Office of Early Childhood website at www.ct.gov/oec/smartstart.
Click here to follow Daily Voice Bridgeport and receive free news updates.