In Wyoming, 631 children under the age of three are enrolled in Early Head Start programs, and 776 3-year olds and 1,137 4-year olds are enrolled in Head Start programs. The state currently does not have a state-funded preschool program. However, Wyoming does have numerous private preschool and childcare facilities that are licensed through the state’s Department of Family Services. The average annual cost of center-based infant care in the state is $9,100.
- What the Governor is saying: Wyoming’s first lady Carol Mead is working to advance early childhood literacy in the state through a coalition of community partners with the program titled, Eat. Read. Grow. The program provides financially disadvantaged families with an opportunity to spend quality time together over a hot meal and encourages them to read together at home by providing a free, age-appropriate book to each child.
- What’s happening in the Legislature: In February 2014, an early education bill that would have empowered the Wyoming Department of Education to coordinate early childhood learning in the state and funded the enhancement of pre-school and day care programs in the state was defeated in the state’s House of Representatives.