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Should taxpayers be responsible for early childhood education?

It’s no secret a child is better off growing up in an upper-income home with responsible parents. Pre-pre-school is a grand idea and well worth exploring, yet none of David Hornbeck’s suggestions can compare to raising a child in a stable and supportive environment, no matter what the financial level (“Md. education commission should focus on pre pre-school years,” Dec. 21).

I question that the number of words heard by a child during early development is based class affiliation. All children today have access to television, so these income level gaps are hard to believe. Perhaps more TV watching is a good idea in the long run.

Who will pay for all the pre-pre-school education the Kirwan Commission recommends? Maryland taxpayers already shoulder an enormous load for schooling. And what about the parents? All too often the rest of us are asked to provide services families themselves should be handling.

One place everyone might take advantage of is the Enoch Pratt Free Library, right here in Baltimore. Perusing the January-February calendar, I note fine early learning programs such as: Preschool Leaps, Toddler Jumps, Baby Time Fun for Under One and Mother Goose Baby Steps. No doubt much, much more is available.

As a taxpayer, I’m happy to help with pre-pre-school opportunities, but families must take greater responsibility as well.

Rosalind Heid, Baltimore

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