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Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

Your advocacy has paid off!

On Thursday, July 26, 2018, Governor Charlie Baker signed a $41.8 billion state budget for fiscal year 2019. The governor made no vetoes to early education and care line items. This year’s budget is the first in 10 years to surpass the pre-recession, fiscal year 2009 high point of state funding for early education and care.

This year’s budget highlights include $20 million for the early educator salary rate reserve, $10 million for a new early educator workforce development initiative, $5 million for preschool expansion, $30 million for quality improvement, and more.

Please take a minute to thank your legislators and Governor Baker for this historic investment in high-quality early education. 

Visit the Strategies for Children website for full budget details.

What do families, teachers, administrators, and Boston Mayors Tom Menino and Marty Walsh all have in common?

High-quality early education.

This story — of how a big city educates some of its smallest residents — is told in a newly published book, “Children at the Center: Transforming Early Childhood Education in the Boston Public Schools.”

“More than a decade ago,” the book explains, “Boston made a daring bet – that it could build and sustain a high-quality, whole-child focused, intellectually engaging early education program that would significantly lower the city’s persistent achievement gaps by locating that program within its public school system.”

The good news?

“That bet is clearly paying off.”

“Children at the Center” has three expert authors: Betty Bardige, a psychologist and an early childhood author and advocate; Megina Baker, a researcher at Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a Boston University early childhood education faculty member; and Ben Mardell, a principal investigator at Harvard Graduate School of Education’s Project Zero.  Continue Reading »

Photo: Alessandra Hartkopf for Strategies for Children

Strategies for Children is seeking a photography and multimedia media intern to document children and teachers in early education settings as well as our advocacy work at the State House and out in the community.

Our ideal candidate is a college student in the Greater Boston area who has experience in photography and video production.

We’re looking for someone who can create images and think strategically about how they will work on our blog as well as on Facebook and Twitter.

Responsibilities will include taking and editing pictures and videos as well as brainstorming about visual media strategies.

Specifically, we’re looking for photos and video of great classroom moments between teachers and students; of civic and business leaders advocating for early education; and of new ideas and strategies in early childhood education.

Qualifications:

• Own a camera.

• Knowledge of photo and video editing software.

• Knowledge of young children and early childhood education.

• Ability to travel around the Greater Boston area.

Our internships are unpaid, so interns must be able to earn college credit for this work or use it to complete a class project.

If you’re interested, please email a cover letter, a resume, and samples of your photography and/or videos to Titus DosRemedios, Strategies’ Director of Research and Policy, at tdosremedios@strategiesforchildren.org.

The submission deadline is Friday, August 17, 2018.

Rebecca Ruiz

 

This is one of a series of blogs featuring first-person accounts from early educators across Massachusetts.

* * *

I run my own childcare service directly from my home. In September, I will have been in the education and care field for eight years.

I support children by creating an academically and emotionally supportive environment. I do this by scaffolding lessons that educate the whole child, by giving my daycare children the tools they need to be socially and emotionally successful, and by creating a welcoming environment for all families.

I’ve had many Yes! I know you can do it moments in my career, and every single one of them can be considered my most proud moment. Most of these moments occur when I see the skills that my daycare children have acquired through hard work and persistence, such as when a child learns how to walk, say their first word, trace their name, and read their first word. Continue Reading »

Source: Strategies for Children

 

Full-day kindergarten – some children have access to it, but across the country many don’t.

In fact, “less than third of all states even require full-day kindergarten,” Education Week reports, adding:

“That’s one of the findings in a 50-state comparison guide to policies surrounding kindergarten through 3rd grade…” The guide was released by the nonpartisan, nonprofit Education Commission of the States.

“The newly updated report, which was released last month, finds that that only 15 states and the District of Columbia require full-day kindergarten.”

As the Children’s Defense Fund argues, “Unequal access to publicly funded full-day and full-week, high-quality kindergarten means too many young children lose a critical opportunity to develop and strengthen foundational skills necessary for success in school and lifelong learning.” Continue Reading »

Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

 

The third in a three-part series on summer learning.

Parents and educators have long been worried about summer learning loss. But as we’ve recently blogged, summer learning is efforts are benefitting from national attention and action in cities.

Today we’re sharing a round-up of summer learning resources for parents, educators, and advocates.

For Parents, Educators, and Librarians

The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) offers parents five tips for promoting their children’s summer learning.

Among the suggestions: Continue Reading »

A new study published in PLOS ONE by researchers from New York University “examined the long-term impacts of an early childhood program called the Chicago School Readiness Project (CSRP) and found evidence suggesting that the program positively affected children’s executive function and academic achievement during adolescence.”

“ ‘Although we did not find large impacts on all of the outcomes assessed, the positive results for executive function and academic achievement were certainly encouraging,’ said lead author and Research Assistant Professor, Tyler Watts. ‘We think these results suggest that high-quality programs can produce important effects on key long-term outcomes.’ ”

“ ‘Many recent early childhood interventions have found that effects fade in the years immediately following the end of the program,’ Watts explained. ‘Unfortunately, most of these studies have not continued to follow-up with participants past elementary school. Our results suggest that if we expect early programs to produce long-lasting results, then we should keep looking at outcomes at least into adolescence.’ ”

“NYU Study Uncovers Connections Between Early Childhood Programs and Teenage Outcomes,” New York University, July 16, 2018

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