As a retired pediatrician and a former school board member, I have had the opportunity to personally see the remarkable benefits of a well-designed and effectively administered pre-kindergarten program.

These benefits extend well beyond the first few years of a child’s elementary education. Teens and even adults who have been enrolled in pre-kindergarten programs demonstrate the beneficial long-term social, educational and economic effects.

Now our governor wants to reduce or eliminate state support for pre-kindergarten programs. If we don’t “pay it forward” with these incredibly effective programs, we will be eliminating opportunities that enhance the lives of our youths well into their futures.

David Barber, M.D. (retired)