Early Childhood Advocates to Gather at the Capitol Feb. 28

More than 80 participants expected to meet legislators to show support for policies promoting early childhood development and learning.

Contact: Tara Manthey
Title: Communications Director
Phone: (720) 256-1312
Email: tara@coloradokids.org

Early Childhood Advocates to Gather at the Capitol Feb. 28

More than 80 participants expected to meet legislators to show support for policies promoting early childhood development and learning.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

February 22nd, 2013

Denver, CO – Early childhood advocates, including parents, service providers, and others, will gather at the Colorado State Capitol Feb. 28 to explore the latest issues in early childhood policymaking, learn new advocacy skills, and reach out to lawmakers to ensure Colorado’s youngest children are at the forefront of their minds as they craft policy impacting the lives of children and families.

WHAT: Early Childhood Advocacy Day, an event designed to raise the voices of parents, caregivers, early childhood professionals, and others who care about early childhood learning and development.

WHEN: 8 a.m. to 2:30 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013

WHERE: Central Presbyterian Church, 1660 Sherman St. in Denver; and Colorado State Capitol, 200 E. Colfax in Denver

SCHEDULE:

8 a.m. Breakfast & Registration (Central Presbyterian)

8:30 a.m. Welcome: Importance of Speaking Up for Kids
Jennifer Landrum, Vice President of Early Childhood Initiatives, Colorado Children’s Campaign
Charlotte Brantley, President & CEO, Clayton Early Learning
Gloria Higgins, President, Executives Partnering to Invest in Children (EPIC)

8:50 a.m. How to be an Effective Child Advocate
Sen. Jessie Ulibarri (D-Commerce City)
Rep. Amy Stephens (R-Monument)

9:30 a.m. Review pending legislation related to early childhood development & care
Chris Watney, President & CEO, Colorado Children’s Campaign
Molly Yost, Policy Specialist, Clayton Early Learning
Jennifer Landrum, Vice President of Early Childhood Initiatives, Colorado Children’s Campaign
Cody Belzley, Vice President of Health Initiatives, Colorado Children’s Campaign

11:00 a.m. Legislator visits (Colorado State Capitol)

1:15 p.m. Lunch (Central Presbyterian); Debrief & inspiration
Jacy Montoya Price, Community Groups Coordinator, Colorado Children’s Campaign
Eileen Forlenza, Family & Community Engagement Specialist, Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment

NOTES: Children will also be in attendance at the event. The agenda includes kid-friendly activities to engage them while the adults participate in the discussions.

Background: Too often in the debate about early childhood development and learning, the voices and stories of actual parents and children—and their needs and experiences—are not included in the decision-making process. Colorado Children’s Campaign and Clayton Early Learning are hosting Early Childhood Advocacy Day to raise the voices of parents, caregivers, teachers and others who care about young children.

The Colorado Legislature can have a big impact on early childhood development. It has created programs like The Colorado Preschool Program (CPP), which is an effective program that meets six out of 10 quality standards of the National Institute for Early Education Research and consistently demonstrates school readiness gains for Colorado’s most at-risk children.

There is still work to be done. Among the 39 states with state-supported preschool programs, Colorado ranks 36th in spending, 21st in access to preschool for 4-year-olds and 11th in access for 3-year-olds.

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About Colorado Children's Campaign


The Colorado Children’s Campaign is a nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy organization committed for over 25 years to creating hope and opportunity for all of Colorado’s more than 1.2 million kids. The Children’s Campaign champions policies and programs that help lift children out of poverty, improve child health, early childhood learning and development, and K-12 education, and provide all of Colorado’s children the opportunity to reach their full potential. The Children’s Campaign is one of four leading members of the All Kids Covered coalition, along with Colorado Coalition for the Medically Underserved, Colorado Covering Kids and Families and Metro Organizations for People (MOP). For more information, please visit www.coloradokids.org.

Clayton Early Learning is Colorado’s leading catalyst in providing and improving early education during the critical prenatal-to-5 period. The non-profit organization, which includes two schools, harnesses the synergy of research, practice and training to close learning gaps for the children who need it most. Through its public and private partnerships, Clayton Early Learning drives system change throughout the state championing the fact that quality early education can and does change lives.

If you would like more information about this topic, please contact Tara Manthey at (720) 256-1312 or email Tara at tara@coloradokids.org.