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Warren to form universal pre-K commission

Rochester Business Journal
February 4, 2014

Rochester Mayor Lovely Warren plans to form a commission to promote universal pre-kindergarten initiatives in the Rochester City School District.

Warren announced the initiative Tuesday during a plenary address at the University of Rochester Presidential Symposium. The commission is in its early stages, she said. Its members have not been identified.

Warren made improving the city school district her top priority during her campaign for mayor last year.

“From the earliest days of my campaign, I have been stressing the importance of early education, universal pre-K,” Warren said in a statement.
“The good news is that this year policymakers are finally taking notice of the mountain of compelling research in support of universal pre-K.”
Commission members will lobby leaders in Albany for a fair share of state funding; seek grants for studies that would quantify enrollment; work with community partners to assess the supply of pre-K teachers and development programming; and convene focus groups to collect feedback, Warren said.

Allen Williams, the city’s director of special projects, and Marisol Ramos-Lopez, commissioner of the Department of Recreation and Youth Services, are to lead the commission.

“It can no longer be about public schools versus charter schools, or teachers unions versus parent groups,” Warren said.

“These are false choices. And we can no longer operate under a double standard that asks students, teachers, administrators, parents or citizens to be patient because change is coming,” she said. “The time is now.”

(c) 2014 Rochester Business Journal. To obtain permission to reprint this article, call 585-546-8303 or email

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