Photo: Micaela Bedell for Strategies for Children
In 1990, the Annie E. Casey Foundation and the Center for the Study of Social Policy published the first KIDS COUNT national data book. It had 52 one-page profiles: one for the nation, one for Washington, D.C., and one each for all 50 states.
The Casey foundation’s thinking was simple: the more people knew about children’s needs, the more they would do to meet these needs. That’s why the foundation had three goals: track children’s well-being over time and across states, provide unbiased data on children’s welfare and focus more attention on children’s issues.
Today, KIDS COUNT is a national and state-by-state effort to track and disseminate data on issues affecting children. The core of the program is the data center, which “features hundreds of indicators with more than four million data points,” according to the foundation. The scope of the data spans the birth-17 age range, and in the case of teen data may go up to age 19. (more…)
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Photo: Gus Freedman
“I’m glad there’s passion in the room. We’re gonna need it,” Governor Patrick said to warm applause last week at the Early Childhood Summit 2013: Innovation and Opportunity at the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.
Strategies for Children partnered with the Boston Children’s Museum, the Massachusetts Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University to sponsor the summit. Support also comes from the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care, the United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley, the Boston Foundation and the TruePoint Center for Higher Ambition Leadership.
This is the second early childhood summit convened in recent years. It builds on the success of the first summit held in November, 2011, and it is also part of the Boston Children’s Museum’s 100th birthday.
Patrick spoke in the Federal Reserve’s auditorium to a full house of nearly 400 pediatricians, educators, neuroscientists, museum professionals, business leaders, economists, parents and policymakers – all pursuing the same goal: devising and acting on bright, new ideas for the future of early childhood. (more…)
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On Monday, I begin a new job as senior media relations specialist at the Dana-Farber/Children’s Hospital Cancer Center. As excited as I am about the opportunities ahead, I enter this next chapter with mixed emotions. I have enjoyed my 3½ years at Strategies for Children and have learned much from my amazing colleagues. In Massachusetts and around the country we are poised to make substantial new investments in young children. I would like to think that this blog has played a role in building informed support for high-quality early education and early literacy. Although my name appears on the posts, it has truly been a collaborative effort here at Strategies. This collaboration will continue with an excellent new writer.
I am thrilled that Alyssa Haywoode, a former Boston Globe colleague, will take over as chief blogger. As an editorial writer at the Globe from 1996-2008, Alyssa often wrote about early education and played a key role in building support for what then was the new idea of creating a statewide system of high-quality early education. I have left a few posts in the cupboard to ease the transition, so you might see my name on blog items for a while as Strategies hands over the reins to Alyssa.
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We are pleased to announce the appointment of Strategies for Children CEO Carolyn Lyons as the organization’s new president.
Lyons joined SFC in 2002 as chief operating officer after a successful career in business that included serving as vice president of Pearson Education’s Learning Network and director of international programming at Continental Cablevision/MediaOne. She serves on the board of the Milton Early Childhood Alliance and has chaired the board of the Hattie B. Cooper Community Center in Boston. Lyons graduated magna cum laude from St. Joseph’s University and earned an MBA from the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. Margaret Blood, SFC’s founding president, will continue to serve on the board of directors.
Lyons assumes the presidency of SFC after a decade of outstanding leadership, during which she worked closely with Blood and Amy O’Leary, director of SFC’s Early Education for All Campaign, to build the organization and spur the development of a statewide system of high-quality early education and care. Together they led efforts that resulted in the creation of the Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care, the Universal Pre-Kindergarten statute and grant program and the Early Childhood Educators Scholarship and laid the foundation for the state’s Quality Rating and Improvement System. Together they launched the 10-year campaign to improve children’s reading proficiency that began with the June 2010 the release of “Turning the Page: Refocusing Massachusetts for Reading Success,” a report that SFC commissioned from Nonie Lesaux, a nationally recognized literacy expert at the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Lyons’s appointment comes at a time of transition for the organization, as it adds an on-the-ground best practices initiative around reading proficiency and high-quality early education to its ongoing state-level policy work.
“We’re at a very exciting juncture,” Lyons says. (more…)
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