Democratic gubernatorial candidate Gretchen Whitmer is proposing to provide preschool to all 4-year-olds, to triple the number of literacy coaches and to stop transferring school aid revenue to colleges.

The proposals are included in an education plan the former legislative leader outlined at a Lansing school Friday.

Whitmer says as governor, she would help increase teachers' pay after years of Republican control of state government, oppose the "hyper focus" on standardized testing and work to add more career counselors.

According to a new report released by First Steps Kent this morning, many children lack access to early childhood health services and education. The report, titled “Analyzing Gaps in Early Childhood Services," found that while strides have been made in Kent County to ensure children under the age of 6 are ready for kindergarten, many local kids start their education lacking the fundamental tools and building blocks needed to be successful.

Included in the report’s findings:

·        Fewer than 1 in 5 economically disadvantaged children have access to 3-year-old preschool.

The Michigan Legislature has given the O.K. to increase school district preschool funding by more than $4 million.

The Michigan Legislature is adding $4.3 million to the new state budget to ensure school districts receive the same amount of funding for preschool slots as this year.