Upcoming Community Meetings – Be a Voice for Young Children

| May 1, 2015

First Things First offers information on upcoming community meetings.

Ready for School. Set for Life.

You understand that 90% of a child’s brain develops before kindergarten and early experiences lay the foundation for success in school and beyond. Now, you have an opportunity to share that message with education policy leaders in upcoming forums being held throughout Arizona.

Superintendent of Public Instruction Diane Douglas is hosting a series of public meetings called the “We Are Listening” tour to hear directly from community members about their opinions and concerns regarding education issues.

You can be a voice for young children by attending the meeting in your community to ensure that early childhood is part of the conversation. The meetings are free to attend and registration is not required.

Upcoming dates for the “We Are Listening” tour in your area (please check the Department of Education website to confirm meeting times and locations):

Here are some key points that can be shared:

  • Success starts before kindergarten. Vocabulary, attention and general knowledge at ages 3 and 4 are strongly correlated to reading comprehension levels at ages 9 and 10. In addition, important social and behavioral skills such as motivation, self-discipline and focus begin to take root from birth to 5 years old. If we want to improve literacy for Arizona 4th-graders, we need to start where learning and language development begin — at birth.
  • Early education is more than preschool and kindergarten. Early childhood education encompasses experiences had in the home, with relatives and friends, as well as in formal child care and preschool programs. We need to work together to help caregivers feel confident as their child’s first teacher and give families options when it comes to their child’s early learning.
  • Early childhood is everybody’s issue. Children who have access to quality early learning experiences are more prepared for kindergarten and do better in school. They have better relationships with peers and are less likely to need special education or be held back a grade.

Members of the public also can submit their feedback via email at HearingEveryVoice@azed.gov or online at www.azed.gov/HearingEveryVoice.

Tags: , , , , , ,

Category: Events, General, Resources

Comments are closed.