Georgia has Lost Thousands of Preschool, Daycare Teachers. Can the Lottery Help?

Illustration by Brittney Phan (State Affairs)

Key Points
  • Georgia’s preschools workforce dropped by roughly 20% from 2017 to 2020.
  • Preschool directors and advocates say many teachers have left for higher-paying jobs at Target and Walmart.
  • The state has more than $1 billion in Lottery reserves that could be used to boost funding for local preschools but hasn’t been touched.
Paige McKay Kubik lost a third of her staff at preschools and daycares she runs through the Frazer Center in Atlanta after the COVID-19 pandemic hit. Months later, she found it nearly impossible to hire new teachers – mostly due to competition from better-paying, less stressful jobs behind a cash register. “Frankly, you could work for Target or Walmart and clock out when you’re done rather than have the stress of caring for young children,” Kubik told State Affairs. “We ...