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New report suggests early childhood education is essential to maintaining workforce

Anders Sandberg

Nationwide roughly half of the current workforce is expected to retire within the next fifteen years, according to a new report by the Children’s Hospital Association. 

The report found that child supports, like early childhood education and healthcare, are largely handled at the state level - meaning the amount of support varied widely between states.

Mark Wietecha is with the CEO of the association. He said supporting early childhood development is a good way to get ahead of the problem.

“We need 100% if we can of the kids that are out there to be productive and engaged human beings. If we’ve got a scale back in healthcare and education that’s going to increase the number of kids that can’t engage.”

Wietecha said it’s hard to ensure strong support for children when it’s handled mostly by states.

“We’ve got a small number of states that have a lot of growth in kids and they are going to have a little different outlook than a state like Michigan which, as you know we’ve had negative growth in kids, if you project that out forward it creates some problems that we’re not going to be able to fix unless we get started early.”

Wietecha said a declining workforce is something that needs to be taken seriously now.