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Associated Press, Published January 23 2012

Minnesota school districts focus on early education

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Some Twin Cities school districts are focusing on early education to close the achievement gap.

The Anoka-Hennepin School Board considers a proposal Monday night to offer tuition-free full-day kindergarten in seven of the district's 24 elementary schools. Anoka associate superintendent Mary Wolverton says that by the end of kindergarten, students should be well on their way to reading. Those who aren't can be targeted for extra help.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press says Burnsville's school board recently voted to implement full-day kindergarten. Research shows early education and kindergarten can help reduce the achievement gap between low-income and affluent students by the third grade.

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Information from: St. Paul Pioneer Press, http://www.twincities.com

Copyright 2012 The Associated Press.