Solid Ground is joining the Children’s Alliance and other members of the Equity in Education Coalition in asking Washington State’s congressional delegation and the U.S. Departments of Education and Health and Human Services to incorporate the needs and strengths of Dual Language Learners into proposed high-quality early learning initiatives.
“Brains are like buildings – they start with a foundation. Birth through age five is a crucial time to give children the kinds of enriching experiences and environments they need to build a foundation for success – both in school and in life,” states the Early Learning Action Alliance, convened by the Children’s Alliance.
Congress is considering a state/national partnership that would expand access to high-quality early learning for kids ages birth through five.
“As our nation moves toward the promise of providing quality early learning for every child who needs it, we must ensure that programs are tailored to meet the needs of dual language learners who are the fastest-growing segment of young children,” stated Tony Lee, Solid Ground Advocacy Director.
- Provide high-quality preschool. A new state/federal partnership would invest $75 billion over 10 years to provide all four-year-olds living in families with low and moderate incomes access to high-quality preschool.
- Grow the supply of effective early learning opportunities for young children. In the years before preschool, a new $1.4 billion Early Head Start/Child Care partnership would support communities with expanding the availability of Early Head Start and child care providers that can meet the highest standards of quality for infants and toddlers.
- Extend and expand evidence-based, voluntary home visiting programs. Home visiting programs enhance children’s cognitive, language and learning skills, improve maternal and child health in the early years and leave long-lasting positive impacts on parenting skills. The proposal calls for $15 billion over 10 years for these important services.
Under the current proposal, in the first year alone, Washington is estimated to receive:
- $61 million for participation in voluntary Preschool for All, helping serve 7,451 children from families with low and moderate incomes.
- $8 million for evidence-based voluntary home visiting Early Head Start/Child Care partnerships that would help provide 18,723 children ages 0-3 with high-quality early care and education.
Watch this Early Learning Matters: Invest in Us video for more information.
As the proposal moves forward, Solid Ground is proud to stand with the Children’s Alliance and these partners in our community:
- Children’s Alliance
- Denise Louie Education Center
- El Centro de la Raza
- Equity in Education Coalition
- League of Women Voters of Washington
- Partners for Our Children
- Schools Out Washington
- Seattle Breakfast Group
- Southeast Seattle Education Coalition
- The Washington State Child Care Association
- White Center Community Development Association
Community members are urged to contact their Members of Congress and urge them to support strong investment in early learning. For more information, or to get involved, contact Melissa Bailey at the Children’s Alliance: Melissa@childrensalliance.org.