Updated: Monday, 04 Mar 2013, 10:43 PM EST
Published : Monday, 04 Mar 2013, 10:43 PM EST
VINCENNES, IND. (WTHI) - Federal budget cuts caused by the sequestration are hitting some southern Indiana kids.
PACE Community Action Agency operates Head Start programs in Knox, Daviess and Greene Counties.
As federal funds fall the result will be fewer kids getting a chance to get ready for school.
This class of little learners are some of the 450 kids that are part of the PACE Head Start program in southern Indiana.
They are learning about the letter Q, but the bigger question here is what will happen to this program under sequestration.
"We're hearing that these cuts are happening now," said PACE Associate Director Tai Blythe. "That we need to start making plans right now. That means we need to start looking at classrooms. We need to start looking at staff. We need to start looking at locations."
For every 4 kids that receive Head Start services here, another one is on a waiting list trying to get in.
The budget cuts will make that waiting list even longer.
"It's frustrating, absolutely, because we see the demand for services," said Blythe. "We see the children entering kindergarten, not ready, and the schools see that as well, so any cuts are going to have a big impact on the community."
There is never a good time to cut funding for kids and officials say that given the recent economic situation the timing couldn't be worse.
"We think with funding cuts, with the trickle down, not only we're getting less slots, but we're getting more people searching for those slots, so our waiting lists are only going to grow," said Blythe.
Something that will mean more kids are left out in the cold and less prepared for school because Congress can't come up with a solution for the budget.
PACE administrates several other federally funded programs and officials say they are still awaiting word on how the budget cuts will impact those programs.
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