All children deserve a high quality education from cradle to career that builds the skills and knowledge they need to succeed. Access to high quality early learning programs for young children provides a strong foundation for children to succeed in school and in life, and we know that investments in early childhood yield high returns.
Learning environments through high school and beyond should be positive, safe, and equitable. Because they are well situated to help, schools and other education centers can address the various factors that impact learning, including health, poverty, and family circumstances.
- Increase access to quality early learning environments for more children.
- Expand the Child Care Assistance Program to cover more low-income, working families by increasing eligibility to 200 percent of the federal poverty level.
- Increase the payments child care providers receive to care for children enrolled in CCAP so families, especially in rural areas, can rely on child care providers to remain open and continue to accept CCAP.
- Encourage the use of high-quality child care centers for delivery of preschool services, in addition to public preschool and Head Start programs.
- Raise eligibility for public preschool programs to 200 percent of the federal poverty level.
- Invest in children from birth to age eight by building a high quality early childhood workforce.
- Advance opportunities that help youth graduate and succeed after high school, such as vocational focused paths-of-learning and college readiness courses.
- Ensure all alternative education programs fulfill their important role of helping students complete high school and be prepared for the workforce or college.
- Close achievement gaps for students with disabilities by connecting them to special education services.
- Promote effective responses to student misbehaviors to get students back on track in school, including connecting students in need to support services.
- Reduce the disproportionate number of youth of color who are suspended and placed in alternative programs compared to their white peers.
- Strengthen child health within the school setting, including the availability of nutritious food, physical activity opportunities, and basic health services.
- Blueprint for Kentucky’s Children Early Childhood Work Team – Working group made up of experts, practitioners, and advocates across the state to identify and promote policy changes that will improve outcomes for young children. For more information, contact Shannon Moody at email@example.com.
- Strong Start Kentucky – Coalition working to increase access to high quality preschool programs with the goal that every child has the opportunity to receive the highest-quality education possible.
- Kentucky Strengthening Families – Partnership promoting resources, supports, and coping strategies to help children and their families deal with stress, increase school readiness, and prevent child abuse and neglect.
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Visit the Governor’s Office of Early Childhood website
Visit the KIDS COUNT Data Center