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Archive for the ‘Strategies for Children’ Category

Photo: Micaela Bedell for Strategies for Children

Photo: Micaela Bedell for Strategies for Children

It’s spring, and it’s time for the 14th Annual Early Educators Awards Gala, hosted by the Boston Association for the Education of Young Children.

This year’s gala will be held on Friday, April 3, 2015, from 7:00 p.m. to 11:00 p.m. at Lombardo’s in Randolph.

The Mistress of Ceremonies will be Amy O’Leary, the director of our Early Education for All campaign.

The gala celebrates the hard work and accomplishments of early educators. So please nominate an early educator for an award. The deadline for nominations has been extended.

You can nominate someone for one of the following six categories:

- Leadership & Management: for being a strong presence in the field of early education and care; working to improve awareness of the importance of early education; and understanding the policies and procedures that are necessary to support a quality early education program. (more…)

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The Building on What Works Coalition. Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

The Building on What Works Coalition

A new coalition held an event at the State House last week and asked legislators to create powerful new educational opportunities for children.

The Building on What Works Coalition unites educators, business leaders, and elected officials who want to root out educational inequality and give all the state’s children the educational experiences they will need to thrive in our 21st century economy.

The coalition is calling for the state’s fiscal year 2016 budget to invest $75 million in a fund that communities could use to take one or more of the following steps:

• expand access to high-quality, birth-to-age-5 early learning opportunities

• expand K-12 learning time by making school days or school years longer, and,

• design innovative learning systems that draw on educators’ talents as well as on technology and public resources

The fund would be made available to communities where more than 50 percent of the students served are high-need.  (more…)

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Photo: Alessandra Hartkopf for Strategies for Children

Photo: Alessandra Hartkopf for Strategies for Children

Here’s a great activity for families and for early education and care programs in Massachusetts:

Gather glitter and glue, feathers, mini pompoms, and construction paper.

Ask the children in your lives or programs to use these and other materials to make Rising Stars.

Send the stars to Governor Charlie Baker by Friday, February 13th, 2015. Even sooner is better. His address:

Governor Charlie Baker
State House, Room 280
Boston, MA 02133

Why now? Baker is putting together his state budget proposal for fiscal year 2016, and Rising Stars remind elected officials how important early education and care programs are for closing the academic achievement gap and preparing children for lifelong success.

Massachusetts is facing a significant budget shortfall, so Baker will have to make hard choices. But even in tough financial times, it makes sense to invest in (more…)

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Andy Hargreaves, professor  at Boston College's Lynch School of Education. Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

Andy Hargreaves, professor at Boston College’s Lynch School of Education. Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

“The moment is ripe for more deliberate action in the early childhood sphere in Massachusetts,” according to a new report from the Rennie Center, a nonprofit organization that focuses on education research and policy.

The annual report — “Condition of Education (COE) in the Commonwealth Report: Priority Actions for a Statewide Agenda” — includes a data report and a policy action guide. Several research and policy organizations, including Strategies for Children, served on the report’s advisory committee.

Rennie released the report at a standing-room-only event at the Omni Parker Hotel that brought together Jim Peyser, the state’s new secretary of education with the chairs of the Boards of the Departments of Early Education and Care; Elementary and Secondary Education; and Higher Education.

The report “highlights what works now,” Pendred Noyce, chair of Rennie’s board, said at the Omni Parker event, explaining that the report points to successful programs that could be replicated to improve educational outcomes across the state. (more…)

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Chris Martes

Chris Martes

Chris Martes, Strategies for Children’s president and CEO, has a new article out in the latest edition of CommonWealth Magazine.

In “A chance to lead on early education,” Martes writes that Massachusetts can be a national role model by building strong pre-K programs. This would prepare more children for lifelong success and set an example for other states.

“From the White House to business boardrooms to the offices of scores of Republican and Democratic mayors, governors, and members of Congress, we’re seeing historic momentum on expanding and improving preschool programs,” Martes writes.

“It is in this spirit of historic potential that we welcome Gov. Charlie Baker to the State House. He and his team have the opportunity to break new ground.”

Pre-K Helps Improve K-12

“The Commonwealth needs strong K-12 schools. But having served for nearly two decades as a school superintendent and as an interim superintendent in five Massachusetts communities, I can tell you that K-12 schools cannot reform education on their own,” Martes explains. “There’s too much work to do. Too many achievement gaps are already in place on the first day that children walk into kindergarten.  (more…)

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Photo Source: Charlie Baker's Facebook page

Photo Source: Charlie Baker’s Facebook page

Today, Charlie Baker is going to be sworn in as the new governor of Massachusetts.

It’s an exciting time for Baker who has spent years working in Massachusetts state government. Among his jobs: secretary of health and human services and secretary of administration and finance.

Now Baker moves into the executive office, and his “inaugural events — built on the ‘Let’s be great, Massachusetts’ theme of his campaign — will include an interfaith service and concert,” the Boston Globe says, adding:

“When Baker moves into his office on the third floor of the State House, he’ll honor one of his predecessors by placing his or her portrait over the mantel.”

Baker also received four parting gifts that, the Globe explains, “traditionally pass from the outgoing governor to the successor.” They are:

1. The pewter key to the governor’s office
2. Former governor Benjamin Butler’s Bible, which he first bestowed in 1884
3. The governor’s gavel, made from oak taken from the USS Constitution, and,
4. The Massachusetts General Statutes, in which the departing governor usually inscribes a message to the governor-elect

The inauguration will include residents and organizations from around the state. According to the Lowell Sun, “The Angkor Dance Troupe won’t be the only Lowell institution to represent the city at Gov.-elect Charlie Baker’s inauguration (more…)

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Holiday Break

snowmanThe blog is taking a holiday break and will return on Monday, January 5th, 2015.

Happy New Year.

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