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Advocates Cheer White House Spending on Early-Ed.

The White House closed out 2014 by turning its powerful spotlight on the cause of early learning, announcing the results of two federal grant programs and unveiling a new philanthropic effort aimed at infants, toddlers, and young children.

The overall investment—some $1 billion in new federal early-education money filtering out to the states—is still far short of the $75 billion, 10-year investment in preschool that President Barack Obama has been urging lawmakers to adopt. And the new, Republican-controlled 114th Congress may be just as unlikely to follow that call as the Congress that just ended.