I ran across a wonderful daycare service recently that many my age would have appreciated when our children were in need of day care. Aunt Sammie’s Day Care provides care, food, and education services to your child and best of all it is FREE. I was interested to find out that Aunt Sammie offers care to children from “prenatal to aged three” in one of their programs. Child care before they are born! You’ll be pleased to know that Aunt Sammie’s is in fact a non-profit corporation with nearly 2,900 locations with over 56,000 classrooms and served over one million in 2009-2010. Did I mention that it is FREE?
Of course there is a catch. The free part only applies to the children and families eligible for their services who are described as “at-risk” while the rest of us paid $9,300,000,000.00 (that’s $9.3 billion) for Aunt Sammie’s services in FY 2009/2010. Of course I am talking about the Head Start and Early Head Start programs. Head Start is one of those up on the pedestal entitlement programs that dare not be touched by politicians and in particular Republicans. There are few better Democrat campaign positions than when an opponent wants to reign in the spending on Head Start.
“I don’t need another tax cut. Warren Buffett doesn’t need another tax cut. Not if we have to pay for it by making seniors pay more for Medicare. Or by cutting kids from Head Start.”
BHO (April 13, 2011 in a speech at Georgetown University)
Unfortunately for the children and the taxpayers the Head Start program does not give kids any actual head start as reported in the Washington Post,
“A substantial number of Head Start programs are so ineffective that they do little or nothing to boost child development and learning. A recent evaluation sponsored by the Department of Health and Human Services confirmed that at the end of the first year of school, children who had attended Head Start did no better than similar children who did not attend Head Start. The bottom line is that taxpayers get little for their annual investment of $8 billion in Head Start.”
In a not too surprising approach to reforming the failed program, Obama proposed to study it for a few years before requiring results which in federal government time is probably 5 years. If my math is correct that would be another $45 billion dollars of wasted money as described by Representative Joe Walsh (R-Ill),
“And after all the funding and attempts to reform Head Start, the Department of Health and Human Services and the General Accountability Office and numerous independent studies have determined that there is substantial waste in Head Start… The results don’t at all support major government investment, let alone the nearly $1 billion the President is so adamant about adding to Head Start funding.”
While Head Start’s inception were probably founded in a worthy ideal its implementation and swelling in size has rendered it little more than a taxpayer-funded day care system. If that is the current program function then any continuation of funding should be debated on that basis. Let’s not call it “education” when in reality it is not. At some point we have to face the fact that people below the poverty line MUST pick themselves up and grab for the American Dream and opportunity for life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The Aunt Sammie State (Nanny State) must cease for these people to flourish.