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Hilo, Hawaii News, Sports, & Information Friday, April 18, 2014

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Posted: Monday, December 2nd, 2013 11:18 AM HST

Hawaii parents encouraged to seek preschool aid

By Associated Press

HONOLULU (AP) Hawaii officials are encouraging parents to apply for preschool subsidies, even if they don't think they'll qualify.

A change in the age children can enter kindergarten has some parents worried about paying for an extra year of preschool.

Next school year, students must be 5 on July 31 to enter kindergarten the same year. Previously, children could enter kindergarten if they turned 5 by December 31.

The Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported Friday officials say data from parents who apply for a slice of $6 million in preschool subsidies can help lawmakers make future funding decisions.

State officials and early education advocacy groups are looking at ways to make preschool more affordable in a state where the average cost to attend an accredited preschool is more than $800 a month.

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