Gov. Gavin Newsom's office
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California governor vetoes bill to require kindergarten

Sept. 28, 2022
Gov. Gavin Newsom says the state budget does not have the $268 million that would be needed for mandatory kindergarten in public schools.

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has vetoed a bill that would made kindergarten attendance a prerequisite for California children entering first grade.

The San Jose Mercury-News reports that the cost of requiring kindergarten starting in the 2024-25 school year — up to $268 million annually — was too high.

“With our state facing lower-than-expected revenues over the first few months of this fiscal year, it is important to remain disciplined when it comes to spending," Newsom said in his veto message.

Newsom also vetoed legislation that would have required all elementary schools to offer full-day kindergarten by 2030.

Kindergarten is required in 19 states and Washington, D.C., and 17 states and D.C. require full-day kindergarten, according to the Education Commission of the States.

Legislative analysts estimated 30,000 more children would enroll in public kindergarten if the bill were enacted. It would not have required kindergarten at a particular age, only as a prerequisite to entering first grade.

About the Author

Mike Kennedy | Senior Editor

Mike Kennedy, senior editor, has written for AS&U on a wide range of educational issues since 1999.

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