Kid Governor Releases her Budget

MEDIA ADVISORY ** PHOTO OPPORTUNITY                                        

FOR INFORMATION CONTACT:
Leigh Sims, 206-407-5525, leigh@teamsoapbox.com

Event: December 15, 2014   10:00 AM

Five-Year-Old to Governor Inslee:

Take a Page from My Book—Invest in Early Learning

Toddlers, moms and the Early Learning Action Alliance release ‘board book’
budget for Washington state education, covering the ABC’s of early learning

Seattle, WA—On Monday, December 15, just before nap time, five-year-old Sabella Johnson will step up to the podium as the make-believe kid-governor to share with Governor Inslee and state legislators what she would do if she were in charge and releasing her education budget today—Boost our kids and our economy by investing in high-quality, affordable early learning opportunities.

The Early Learning Action Alliance, and Sabella, will release a toddler-friendly ‘board book’ version of the Washington State Budget for Early Learning, outlining the priorities that should be in the State budget. Moms, dads and pint-sized supporters will be there building their alphabet skills with the books, and rallying for the ABC’s of Early Learning in Washington state: Affordability, Broader access, and Creating quality early learning opportunities.

Also at the press conference, Jennifer Jennings-Shaffer, Early Learning Policy Director of Children's Alliance will discuss the Early Learning Action Alliance priorities and how high-quality early learning is an investment in our littlest learners and our economic future. Moms and kids who are part of the Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP) will be on hand to talk about how the program has helped them. The event will be held at the Refugee and Immigrant Family Center Preschool, a bilingual Spanish-English preschool and tours of the program will be available.

WHAT:            “Kid Governor,” 5-year-old Sabella Johnson releases a Washington State Budget for Early Learning in the form of a toddler’s board book at a rally of preschoolers, parents and Early Learning Action Alliance and MomsRising advocates.

WHEN:             Monday, December 15, 2014 at 10:00 am to 11:00am

WHERE:           Refugee and Immigrant Family Center,

5405 Delridge Way SW, Seattle

                        (Next to Delridge Library, street parking)

Sabella will be dressed as the “Kid Governor” surrounded by pint-sized supporters with signs about early learning. Small and over-sized ABCs of Early Learning board books will be with information on priorities for early learning will be shared with the Governor and state legislators after the event.

“If I were Governor, I would make sure that all my friends and I got a great start in life and in our education with quality early learning,” said 5-year-old Sabella (well, with the assistance of her mom). “When I was three, I loved playing with blocks at my pre-school. I didn’t care then if it built my motor skills or developed my brain. Now that I’m grown, I know that those quality early learning opportunities made me what I am today, a successful kindergartener.”

Priorities for Washington State to invest in:

 Affordability

  • Working Connections Child Care Subsidies
  • Helping families keep continuity of care through 12 month authorization

Broader Access

  • Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP) for access to high-quality preschool
  • Home Visiting to support our most vulnerable families
  • Reach Out and Read to support parents and caregivers

Creating & Supporting Quality

  • Early Achievers quality rating & improvement system for high-quality early learning environments
  • Increased compensation to attract and retain qualified early learning teachers
  • Supporting early learning providers in providing dual-language programming
  • Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation for child care programs or child care professionals

Our state’s investment in early learning programs makes up just 2% of education spending. Increasing that investment to 3% will put Washington on the path to a quality 0-5 early learning system.

“By investing in early learning opportunities, we can ensure that every one of our littlest learners, like Sabella, gets a great start,” said Jon Gould, Deputy Director of Children’s Alliance. “In Washington, we believe all children should have a solid foundation to be successful in school and in life.”

To learn more about ELAA:  http://www.childrensalliance.org/our-current-work/early-learning-now/early-learning-action-alliance

The Early Learning Action Alliance (ELAA) is a dynamic, growing coalition of organizations representing a diverse array of Washington nonprofits, professional associations, businesses and industries. We are united by the belief that all children in Washington state deserve to have the opportunities and support they need in their first five years of life to be prepared for school and a bright future. 

 

To learn more about MomsRising:  http://www.momsrising.org

 

MomsRising.org is an online and on-the-ground grassroots organization of more than a million people who are working to achieve economic security for all families in the United States. MomsRising is working for paid family leave, flexible work options, affordable childcare, and for an end to the wage and hiring discrimination which penalizes so many others. MomsRising also advocates for better childhood nutrition, health care for all, toxic-free environments, and breastfeeding rights so that all children can have a healthy start. Established in 2006, MomsRising and its members are organizing and speaking out to improve public policy and to change the national dialogue on issues that are critically important to America’s families. In 2013, Forbes.com named MomsRising’s web site as one of the Top 100 Websites For Women for the fourth year in a row and Working Mother magazine included MomsRising on its “Best of the Net” list.

 

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