Cost of Headstart vs. Cost of War

By Doug Nobel

Head Start is the nation’s largest preschool program, serving an
estimated 904,000 children. The federal government spends in excess of
$8 billion on Head Start annually, for an average cost of about $7,600
per child served.

Head Start has taken a hit due to sequestration. It has eliminated
services for more than 57,000 children in the coming school year as a
result of the federal budget reductions known as sequestration.

The cuts include a shorter school year and shorter school days, as
well as laying off or reducing the pay for more than 18,000 employees
nationwide. Others eliminated medical and dental screenings and bus

The latest numbers, first reported by the Washington Post, come from
"reduction plans" Head Start grantees submitted to the Department of
Health and Human Services. Head Start had to absorb a 5.27 percent
reduction to its $8 billion in funding.

All told, 57,265 children (nearly 6,000 of whom attend Early Head
Start) saw their services eliminated, according to data provided by
HHS. In New York it was 3,847. .

Head Start is best known for providing preschool to low-income
students, but it supplies many of its 960,000 children with two hot
meals a day, transportation to and from school and basic medical care.
When these services are eliminated, it also affects parents, who often
must find difficult-to-afford day care services or take off days of
work to tend to their children. HHS data says that Head Start will
have administered 1,342,015 fewer days of service nationwide because
of sequestration cuts.

What Will Military Intervention In Syria Cost U.S. Taxpayers?
By Bryce Covert on September 10, 2013 at 11:05 am

A limited cruise missile strike: hundreds of millions. While Secretary
of Defense Chuck Hagel has estimated that an operation would cost
“tens of millions” of dollars, the price tag could be much higher.
The first few weeks of the operation in Libya cost about $600 million,
$340 million of which went to munitions. Each Tomahawk Land Attack
Missile costs $1.4 million.

Meanwhile, the Navy’s USS Nimitz and other vessels were scheduled to
return home from deployment, but they have now been ordered to remain
within striking distance of the country at an estimated cost of $25
million per week. If the U.S. fires missiles and those ships engage in
combat, it’ll cost an additional $30 million per week.

Refueling tankers would also likely be needed, which cost $9.3 million
in the Libya operation for more than 800 hours of flight.

If it escalates to troops on the ground: billions. One path could be
to train the rebels, which would cost $500 million a year and “several
thousand” troops, he estimated. Another, a no-fly zone, would cost $1
billion a month. ***

If the administration gets Congressional authorization and sticks to a
limited action, it probably won’t have to ask Congress for the funds.
The overseas contingency operations fund, which supports combat
operations abroad and is separate from the Department of Defense’s
baseline budget, would likely be where the money comes from, which
stands at $86.5 billion in fiscal year 2013.

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