Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal Visits High-Quality Pre-K Program at Mabel Barrett Fitzgerald Center


Highlights Importance of Passing New York City’s Game Changing Plan for Pre-K and After-School Programs

NYC’s Plan Would Give Full-Day Pre-K to 800 UWS Four-Year Olds Who Need It; Without Plan, Only 25% Would Have Access 

New York, NY – On Friday, Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal visited the Lincoln Square Neighborhood Center’s Mabel Barrett Fitzgerald Day Care Center to highlight the benefits of New York City’s plan for universal pre-K and expanded after school programs, and to build support to pass the plan in Albany.

“In my district, the Mabel Barrett Fitzgerald Center’s program is an excellent example of the power of early education. This program nurtures the cognitive, social, and emotional development of children in our communities so that they have greater opportunities to achieve success later in life.  Now is the time for us to enable all New York City’s children to have access to truly universal pre-K and all middle school students to have access to after-school education programs for the first time in history,” said Assemblymember Linda B. Rosenthal (D/WF – Manhattan).

“It’s not just what Lena’s learning (which is plenty), it’s how. Lena loves Mabel Barrett so much that she’s always a little sad on staff-development days: Ihave to reassure her that school will be open again soon! When your kid can’t wait to get up, get dressed, and get to school–when your kid loves everything about learning–what could be better?” –Deborah Brissman, Parent 

“At a time when education is commodified and priced to the highest bidders, it is more important thanever that our children and families are confident and prepared to take their education to the next level. Universal Pre-K is instrumental in making thathappen. It creates a foundation on which young children can build their futures and establishes an environment in which academic success is the norm. The city’s plan will finally make full day UPK a reality that is long overdue.” –Marc Santora, Director, Mabel Barrett Fitzgerald Daycare at Lincoln Square Neighborhood Center

“The Universal Pre K program has allowed my grandson to excel in his educational process. It gives him a head start in reading , math, geography/cultures and instills in him a thirst for learning. Our conversations regarding school are always very interesting which shows me that his teachers are providing lesson plans that are the foundation for next years kindergarten level.” –Maria Peacock, Grandparent

Under New York City’s plan, all four-year olds would have access to truly universal pre-K for the firsttime in New York City’s history. This would close a gap of 53,767 children who currently receive inadequate part-time pre-K, or no pre-K at all and serve more than 73,000 4-year olds at full implementation. These high-quality programs are proven to increase cognition, boost scores and build fundamental skills that put children on an upward educational path.

In Assembly Member Rosenthal’s district alone, an estimated 800 four-year olds would be served by implementing the City’s plan.  Without adopting the plan, an estimated 600 four-year olds would miss out on full-day pre-K.

New York City’s plan would also aggressively expand after-school learning opportunities for nearly 120,000 middle school students, adding new programs between 3pm and 6pm in academics, culture and athletics. Middle school is a critical period when parents’ involvement in education declines and kids need to be kept off the streets and out of harm’s way.

The City of New York is calling for a five-year increase in the NYC income tax on earners over $500,000 from 3.876% to 4.41%, which would yield approximately $530 million in new revenue each year. The past three New York City mayors have won approval from Albany to raise local taxes for priority issues – this tax increase would be even smaller. 

Albany has promised universal pre-K since 1997, but funding commitments haven’t materialized and tens of thousands of New York City children are left behind. New York City should have home rule authority to raise its own taxes, to provide a dedicated funding source that guarantees program stability.


The Lincoln Square Neighborhood (LSNC) was founded over 65 years ago in 1947. They are committed to meeting the social, educational, recreational and cultural needs of the greater Lincoln Center neighborhood by delivering programs and services to over 1,000 members of the community, from preschoolers to senior citizens. Today, LSNC serves the Lincoln Square community through three programs: a daycare center for pre-school age children, an afterschool program for youth, and acomprehensive support program for seniors. The Center’s Mabel BarrettFitzgerald Daycare Center offers children aged 24 months to 4 years and 11 months an early education program that involves daily educational and culturally sensitive activities, designed by the Daycare Director.

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