PORTLAND, OR, AUGUST 7, 2020 – The Board of County Commissioners unanimously voted Thursday, Aug. 6 to refer the Preschool for All measure to Multnomah County voters in the November 2020 election.
As previously reported, preschool in Multnomah County is among the costliest in the country, while 60 percent of families continue to live at or below the Self Sufficiency Standard. Fifteen percent of Multnomah County families have access to publicly-funded preschool. The measure aims to expand preschool access while addressing systemic racism and supporting the early education workforce.
Commissioner Jessica Vega Pederson, who championed Preschool for All, said at the Board meeting that the timing could not be more urgent to get the measure on the ballot. The existing inequities in preschool access have only been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and worsening disparities affecting Black, Indigenous and People of Color (BIPOC) communities, she said. Read more.