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Mississippi receiving federal grant for preschool programs

Mississippi is receiving a $10.6 million federal grant for preschool programs, Gov. Phil Bryant said Wednesday.

Bryant said the grant will expand a system developed by his State Early Childhood Advisory Council and the Mississippi Department of Human Services.

The governor said the money will help “maximize parental choice and engagement” with a goal of ensuring children have a smooth transition from child care centers, including Head Start, into public schools.

Mississippi’s plan includes coaching and technical assistance for employees of child care centers. It also aims to help low-income families find education and workforce training programs.

“We will teach the next generation early how to get a job and not how to be dependent on the government,” Bryant said on Twitter.

Bryant spokesman Knox Graham said the $10.6 million grant covers one year, but Mississippi can apply for more money the next three years.

Graham said about 60,000 families with children up to age 5 could be affected by programs funded by the grant.

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