Save the Children Action Network Lauds House Passage of Bill to Make Early Learning More Accessible (Save the Children Action Network)

WASHINGTON, June 22, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday passed the Social Impact Partnerships to Pay for Results Act (H.R. 5170), bipartisan legislation that would expand effective social interventions, like early learning programs.

Sponsored by Representatives Todd Young (R-IN) and John Delaney (D-MD), this legislation would allow private and philanthropic investors to enter into contracts with the government to fund programs that serve a public good while also saving the government money. The outcomes of these programs are rigorously evaluated to assess if predetermined goals are met. These goals are intended to save state and federal tax dollars by avoiding more costly interventions in the future.

"All children are born ready to learn, yet far too many children in the U.S. currently do not have access to the early learning opportunities needed to prepare them to succeed in school and life," said Mark Shriver, president of Save the Children Action Network. "This bill is crucial in helping pay for critical early learning programs, like pre-K – something every child deserves."

A portion of the savings would be used to repay investors with a modest return. If the outcomes are not met, no taxpayer money is spent.

This model is an innovative way already being used in some states to finance programs like early childhood education. For example, Utah funded its School Readiness Initiative using a public-private partnership investment model. The School Readiness Initiative expanded early education programs to low-income, at-risk children previously on the state wait list.

Last year, SCAN unveiled a toolbox of innovative financing solutions aimed at bridging the gap between lawmakers' desire to expand access to early childhood education and balance the budget. One of the funding mechanisms included in SCAN's Innovative Financing for Early Childhood Education is Pay for Success financing.

"During this time of budget constraints, this bill would help scale up programs that are critical to our communities, like early education, without spending significant taxpayer dollars," said Shriver. "It provides accountability and transparency to the budgeting process. It's truly a win-win."

The legislation will now be sent to the U.S. Senate for consideration.

Save the Children Action Network is the political voice for kids. We believe that every child deserves the best start in life. That's why we're building bipartisan will and voter support to make sure every child in the U.S. has access to high-quality early learning and that no mother or child around the globe dies from a preventable disease or illness. By investing in kids and holding leaders accountable, we are helping kids from birth to age five survive and thrive. Follow us on Twitter and Facebook.

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CONTACT: Allie Wright, alwright@savechildren.org, (202) 794-1823

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SOURCE Save the Children Action Network