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Tribal advocates keep up legal pressure for fair political maps; 12-member jury sworn in for Trump's historic criminal trial; the importance of healthcare decision planning; and a debt dilemma: poll shows how many people wrestle with college costs.

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Civil rights activists say a court ruling could end the right to protest in three southern states, a federal judge lets January 6th lawsuits proceed against former President Trump, and police arrest dozens at a Columbia University Gaza protest.

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Wyoming needs more educators who can teach kids trade skills, a proposal to open 40-thousand acres of an Ohio forest to fracking has environmental advocates alarmed and rural communities lure bicyclists with state-of-the-art bike trail systems.

NH 'Kids on Campus' program boosts retention, offers hands-on learning

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Tuesday, February 27, 2024   

You might say "every day is 'bring your child to college day'" at New Hampshire's Manchester Community College. On-campus childcare programs are helping to retain students and provide others with hands-on work experience. Students can apply for a regular childcare slot or Head Start, which offers comprehensive education, health and nutrition services to low-income families.

Carrie Marshall, early childhood education professor at Manchester Community College, says the programs can help remove barriers to higher education.

"You know, your child can just come right here with you. You can go to your classes. You can go to the library. Sometimes, they'll go and work and then come back and get their child," Marshall explained.

Research shows that access to affordable childcare is linked to higher graduation rates among college students with children.

Marshall added the campus location also offers other students real-world work experience at a time when childcare workers are in high demand.

Nearly one-quarter of college students are raising children, but fewer than 100 community colleges offer a Head Start classroom on-site. A new five-year initiative called Kids on Campus aims to nearly double that number, and supporters are taking cues from well-established programs like the one in Manchester. Marshall says the program is creating student pathways for upward mobility and exposing others to a rewarding new career in childcare.

"In our program, we've had parents who bring their children in as parents into the Head Start program and then enroll into the early childhood program and become teachers themselves," she continued.

Marshall added students regularly discuss the current shortages in childcare and median low pay for early childhood education workers, which in New Hampshire is about $13 an hour. Still, she said, most students are passionate about their careers.


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