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“On February 5, 2019, President Trump addressed the nation and declared the State of the Union strong. But something was conspicuously absent. Education, specifically early education, is a fundamental necessity in any strong union, or nation, and yet, was a missing piece of the President’s address.”

“Throughout the entirety of his speech, there were key themes including the value of research and technological advances. Over the last century, technology has led to innovative growth and advancements that drive a stronger economy. However, the fundamental and necessary means to achieve these advancements were noticeably absent — a strong, national education system.”

“Mr. President, you forgot one thing. The children.” By Mark Reilly, Vice President of Policy & Government Relations of Jumpstart, a national early education nonprofit. Posted on Medium, February 7, 2019

 

How can K-12 education be improved?

Answers are being hotly debated. But according to a new report, too many people are overlooking a promising answer: K-12 should embrace early education.

“For years, the K–12 world has fundamentally underappreciated how the early years shape long-term educational outcomes,” the report — “Why The K-12 World hasn’t Embraced Early Learning” — explains.

Elliot Regenstein, a partner at the national education law firm Foresight Law and Policy, and the report’s author says:

“The goal of the paper is to provoke some much-needed conversation about strengthening the connection between K-12 and early learning. Massachusetts has always been a leader in education policy, and I hope it will be helpful to the state as it considers ways to continue improving its outcomes.”

In the report, Regenstein notes that there is good will to build on. Continue Reading »

Source: “Child Care in State Economies 2019 Update”

 

Child care providers care for and educate children and enable parents to go to work – but they also have a multibillion-dollar impact on the economy.

“In 2016, 675,000 child care businesses, which are mostly small businesses, produced revenue of $47.2 billion and provided employment for 1.5 million wage and salary and self-employed workers,” according to a new report, “Child Care in State Economies 2019 Update.”

“The purpose of this report is to educate and aid policymakers and business leaders in understanding the structure of the U.S. child care industry and its role in the economy.”

Commissioned by the Committee for Economic Development of The Conference Board, the report was produced by the economic research firm RegionTrack, Inc., and received funding from the Alliance for Early Success.

Continue Reading »

Edward F. Zigler (Photo credit: Michael Marsland. Yale University)

 

We join our friends and colleagues in remembering Ed Zigler and his incredible leadership and commitment to young children and families.

Zigler was “a psychologist and children’s advocate who was a principal architect of the Head Start program in the 1960s,” the Washington Post reports. Zigler “called for schools to be neighborhood social service centers, and advised every president from John F. Kennedy to Barack Obama…”

“An eminent and rigorous scholar, Zigler was Sterling Professor Emeritus of Psychology at Yale University,” a Yale news release says. “He was passionate that science should be in the service of the public interest…” Continue Reading »

“For example, the Episcopal Health Foundation (EHF) in Texas recently committed $3.4 million to give the state’s youngest residents the best chance for healthy futures. The prominent health-focused funder has already made 12 grant commitments to organizations across the state to impact the lives of local children from pregnancy through age three. But unlike many early childhood grants that focus on the educational capacity of babies and toddlers, this effort is largely about promoting physical and mental health.”

“A big emphasis in EHF’s grantmaking here is the need for strong attachment between babies and caregivers to promote early brain development. One of EHF’s strategies in this regard is supporting healthcare providers, including all levels of clinicians and staff that work with pregnant mothers and infants. The other strategy is supporting community-based organizations that can train families on supporting brain development of their own babies before and after birth.”

“Among Regional Foundations, Early Childhood Commands Growing Attention,” by
Alyssa Ochs, Inside Philanthropy, February 6, 2019

Photo: Alessandra Hartkopf for Strategies for Children

 

At a recent meeting of the Early Education and Care Workforce Council, The Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) announced the recipients of the fiscal year 2019 preschool expansion grants.

Known as Commonwealth Preschool Partnership Initiative (CPPI), the program awarded funding to six communities: New Bedford, Somerville, North Adams, Springfield, Lowell, and Boston. The funds will support preschool programs from February 1 through June 30, 2019. EEC expects to renew these grants in fiscal year 2020.

This round of preschool expansion is funded with state dollars. However, more state funds will be needed in FY2020 to meet the demand for preschool funding from other communities. A total of 12 communities applied for the CPPI grant, and at least three additional communities wanted to apply but didn’t because of their limited time and capacity to meet the January 4th deadline. Continue Reading »

 

To teach the whole child, a new report says, it’s best for teachers to braid academics together with social-emotional learning.

“The promotion of social, emotional, and academic learning is not a shifting educational fad; it is the substance of education itself,” the report says, adding, “Social, emotional, and academic skills are all essential to success in school, careers, and in life, and they can be effectively learned in the context of trusted ties to caring and competent adults.”

Released by the Aspen Institute’s National Commission on Social, Emotional, and Academic Development, the report — “From a Nation at Risk to a Nation at Hope” — looks at its 36-year-old predecessor, a report called a “Nation at Risk,” and provides a “a more hopeful assessment” of education in the United States. Continue Reading »

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