Government Shutdown Reaches 2,800 Georgia Children
by Tyler Barr on 10/10/2013


Government Shutdown Reaches 2,800 Georgia Children

More than 2,800 children in north Georgia are staying home from school because of the federal government shutdown, and there's no indication of when they'll be able to return to class.

According to Ninth District Opportunity, Inc., all of its 113 Head Start programs in the northern Georgia district were closed effective Oct. 7 until further notice. Also, 27 Pre-K classrooms are closed and the paychecks of 500 Head Start employees in Georgia were affected.

The following Pre-K centers will remain open:

  • Carnesville Pre-K
  • Hall County Pre-K classrooms located in Hall County school buildings
  • Forsyth County Pre-K classrooms located in the Forsyth elementary schools
  • Cherokee County Pre-K
  • Monarch Pre-K

Some of the Head Start programs are in metro areas like Gwinnett, Cobb, Cherokee, and Douglas Counties. However, most are located in rural areas with no other sources for child care. These programs provide free child care and an early education for children of parents who work or attend college full and part-time. The cost of child care is very expensive, many parents do not make enough to pay babysitters or alternative child care services. 

The National Head Start Association reported Head Start programs in six states (AL, CT, FL, GA, SC, and MS) were closed due to lack of funding, leaving 7,195 of our nation’s most vulnerable children without access to Head Start. More than 11,000 additional children risk losing access to comprehensive Head Start services if the shutdown continues through October. If the government does not reopen by November 1, additional Head Start programs serving more than 86,000 children in 41 states and one U.S. Territory stand to lose access to Head Start funding.


Georgia PTA urges you to contact your U.S. House Representative today.

Suggested message: "As your constituent, I urge you to act NOW to end the government shutdown and prevent the economic catastrophe of a government default, without conditions. Please vote to restore funding for all of the services that families count on in Georgia."

Georgia House of Representatives needs this message! Representatives who support ending the shutdown with no strings attached need to know their constituents are behind them. Representatives who are contributing to the continuation of the shutdown need to be held accountable.