Universal preschool is the first step.
Universal Preschool NOW! is a coalition of parents, child care providers, preschool workers, unions, and community groups who understand that universal preschool is a fundamental part of the fight for social, racial, and economic justice. We helped pass Measure 26-214 (Preschool for All), a once-in-a-generation opportunity for Multnomah County families.
By making preschool free for every 3- and 4-year-old and guaranteeing preschool workers a living wage, Measure 26-214 gives Multnomah County families options, lets kids thrive, and addresses the deep inequities in our community.
Apply to join the Preschool for All Advisory Committee by April 23!
This UP NOW Coalition began as a grassroots campaign. In a historic signature drive, hundreds of volunteers gathered thousands of signatures in five weeks during a pandemic, showing the profound need and enthusiasm for universal preschool in Multnomah County.
The UP NOW Coalition merged with a separate preschool effort to present Measure 26-214 (Preschool for All) to voters in November – and we won! This measure ensures all 3- and 4-year-olds in Multnomah County are able to attend free, high-quality, culturally relevant and inclusive preschool. This program will change lives in Multnomah County and set the standard for the nation. Join us for what comes next!OUR COALITION HOW WE DID IT
What is the Preschool For All plan?
Universal preschool is one of the most profound ways a society can give its children a good start in life, and America is one of the only wealthy nations where this common-sense benefit is not guaranteed. Measure 26-214 (Preschool for All) provides free, high-quality, culturally responsive and inclusive preschool for all 3- and 4-year-olds, funded by a progressive income tax on the estimated top 8% of county income earners.
Multnomah County has begun hiring for positions created to implement P4A. Click the View Plan button to go to the P4A page on the Multnomah County website. You can see links to the job postings, the P4A plan details, and view FAQs with information for parents, providers, and childcare workers.
Interested in being on the P4A Advisory Committee? Details on how to apply are coming soon! Check the Multnomah County website for updates on how to apply for these volunteer positions.View Plan
I think that the system was already pretty broken, and that this whole COVID-19 thing has brought to light the weaknesses in the system. The fact that we depend on parents to pay, to maintain a child care industry, is not working. And it is really, really not working right now.”
– Savannah Turner, The Nest PlayschoolRead Savannah’s Story
Tax the Rich. School the Children. Pay the Teachers. The case for universal preschool has only become stronger since the pandemic.
– Robert P. Alvarez, Inequity.org
Read on Inequity.org
High quality preschool is a net good — but making it open to all, not just low-income students, confers even greater benefits.
– Tyler Walicek, Truthout
Read on Truthout
Creators of the Portland-area approach tried to avoid the pitfalls of similar policies elsewhere, and are giving teachers large raises.
– Claire Cain Miller, The New York Times
Read on New York Times
A Universal Preschool Campaign in Oregon Galvanizes Broad Support and Rewrites All the Rules
– Elliot Haspel, Early Learning Nation
Read on Early Learning Nation
It wasn’t easy, but after years of organizing, my county in Oregon will have universal early-childhood education.
– Lydia Kiesling, The Cut
Read on The Cut