CommonWealth Magazine: Use pot revenue to expand afterschool programs
IN A RECENT report on the importance of afterschool programs, the Legislature’s Afterschool and Out-Of-School Time Coordinating Council, chaired by Sen. Brendan Crighton and Rep. Jennifer Benson, reached a familiar conclusion, but offers a promising new solution.
For years, chronic underfunding has left too many Massachusetts children without access to the invaluable afterschool and summer learning programs that help them reach their full potential. Available funding streams have remained elusive and inadequate. We believe new state and local revenue from the sale of recreational marijuana would go a long way to properly fund these programs that are proven to increase positive outcomes for kids in school, college, and career.
Our state mandates that a proportion of cannabis revenue be spent on youth education and prevention programs. The research is clear: Students who participate in afterschool programs get higher grades, graduate at higher levels, have fewer behavior issues, and have lower rates of drug abuse than their peers – exactly the outcomes that marijuana revenue should be used to support.