Senate committee moves forward preschool bill

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Associated Press

Posted on February 6, 2013 at 10:04 AM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 6 at 10:04 AM

HONOLULU (AP) — A Hawaii state Senate committee gave its stamp of approval for a constitutional amendment allowing the state to fund a preschool program by partnering with private institutions.

The state constitution prohibits public funding of private institutions.

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor voted Tuesday to approve the bill.

The program is Gov. Neil Abercrombie's top priority this session.

The bill has already passed the Senate Committee on Education and has yet to be heard by the Senate Committee on Ways and Means.

A similar bill is making its way through the House.

Advocates say the bill is important because public-private partnerships are the best way to provide needed quality preschool education.

Opponents say the program is too ambitious and costly.

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