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FL CARMICHAEL PRESCHOOL.JPG

A scaled-back proposal to offer public preschool to California's low-income 4-year-olds was approved by the state Senate today despite Republican objections to the $378 million annual cost.

Senate leader Darrell Steinberg originally set out to provide public preschool for all 4-year-olds in the state. But Gov. Jerry Brown did not include the idea in his budget proposal. The bill the Senate passed today reflects the downsized plan Steinberg presented in a Senate budget subcommittee last week.

Senate Bill 837 passed the Senate 26-10 and now heads to the Assembly for consideration.

PHOTO: A teacher leads a song with the children at Carmichael Parent Participation Preschool on Sept. 12, 2007. Sacramento Bee file / Florence Low



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