Our youngest victims in the Federal Shutdown are our children in the Head Start Program. Help Keep Our Head Start Pre-School Open!
My name is Pam Meo Turner and I am a teacher at the W. C Handy Head Start (Lauderdale County Head Start) in Florence, Alabama. We have a few more days before they shut down our school for good if congress will not act soon. Thank God! Part of the $10 million gift will help keep the doors open to children and staff until Oct 31st. We need to let Congress know that we need them to ACT NOW!
Out of the 1600 Head Start programs, 23 are or will close because of the Federal Shutdown.
It breaks our heart to see this wonderful program close that not only serves infants up to 5yr olds children but serves whole families in the community.
Questions we will ponder on:
What is going to happen to Johnny that is just learning to tie his shoes?
What will to happen to Mary that just learned that her name begins with “M”?
What will happen to Linda who is taking speech?
What will happen to Tom who looks forward to the only two meals that he receives that day at school?
What will happen to Carlos who just picked up a few English phrases?
What will happen to Jason who is still learning how to hold his pencil correctly?
What is going to happen to Sherry’s mom who just starting working at a new job and cannot afford daycare?
We have some unfinished business to complete with our students and their families. Please call your member of Congress and ask them to have a heart and to keep the doors open in our Head Start program. We want them to get a “head start” in learning so it will be an easy transition into kindergarten.
The W. C Handy Head Start is located in the small community of Florence, AL, which is in the northern-western corner of Alabama.
The ripple effect of the Federal shutdown has affected the only Head Start program in our city. We will be forced to close the doors on October 31, 2013. This will directly affect the lives of the 281 children who look forward to coming to school every day, including 48 students who receive home based services. (Not to mention the 42 dedicated and hard-working employees who truly love their family at W. C. Handy.)
The closure of the program will have a devastating impact on the lives of the teachers. Not only in the form of straining their livelihoods, but also an emotional loss- just as if they had lost their own children.
We need your support to ask Congress to do the right thing and acknowledge the importance of the children at W.C. Handy Head Start in Florence and other Head Start across the nation affected by the Federal shutdown.
One of our own community leaders has summed our children’s plight best by stating, “I wonder what they would do if they had to come in here and face these children and these parents and say, ‘you’re not worthy of us going beyond our political differences.’”
Thank you again for your support!