But only about 67 percent of high school students graduate in Georgia, ahead of only two other states and the District of Columbia, according to U.S. Department of Education figures.
Steven Barnett, director of the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University, plans to be in Georgia for the president’s appearance. He doesn’t have details but he expects the president’s initiative to include matching federal funding to help increase participation in early childhood learning programs.
With its pre-K framework and commitment already in place, a state like Georgia would be in a prime position to benefit and could easily get to 90 percent enrollment within a few years, Barnett said.
‘‘If the federal government steps up and offers matching funds, can they make it possible for Georgia to actually serve all the kids? For me, that’s why Georgia’s a great example,’’ he said. ‘‘You have the expressed will to do this. You have some pretty good standards in place.’’