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Mo. senator seeks state funding for preschools

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Public schools could receive state money for preschool programs under a new proposal by a Missouri senator. But budget concerns could diminish its prospects of passage.

Sen. Joseph Keaveny filed two bills Thursday that would fund preschool programs through the state formula that already distributes money for K-12 education. One version would provide state aid for all preschool students; the other would pay only for lower income students.

Republican Senate leaders said Thursday that they like Keaveny's idea but it's unlikely the state can afford it.

The Democratic senator from St. Louis acknowledges that his proposal could cost millions of dollars. But he cites studies showing that early childhood education increases the chances that students will succeed later in life.

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