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Education    |   Health Care    |   Essential Human Services

The building blocks of education are vital

Investments in, and a family’s access to, high-quality preschool programs are an important step in giving a child a strong start to school. 

A child’s growth and development in early childhood, and strong literacy skills by the 3rd grade, are intimately connected to his performance in school and his chances of being competitive in a 21st century economy (New America Foundation, 2011).

Research has shown that a parent’s involvement in a child’s education is a stronger predictor of their educational success than socioeconomic status.

Too many of Ohio’s children are not off to a good start

Investments in, and a family’s access to, high-quality preschool programs are an important step in giving a child a strong start to school.

In Cleveland, half of the children entering 3rd grade are not meeting the proficiency standards for reading and math (Ohio Department of Education, 2012).

More than 40% of students in Cleveland public schools do not graduate from high school.

Preschool to 3rd grade alignment is critical for children to succeed

A P-3rd grade system focuses on aligning standards, curriculum, instruction, assessments, family engagement and professional development practices to create a seamless and effective pathway of learning for children (The Pre-K Coalition, 2011).

Successful models of P-3rd grade alignment have helped to improve student achievement, reduce the need for costly special education services, and produce a more educated, skilled and competitive workforce (American Educational Research, 2009).

Family engagement practices in this model ensure families have access to other supportive services (i.e.- health care, out of school time activities, education and job training, etc.) to build their capacity and support their children’s ability to learn (Center for Law and Social Policy, 2011).

We advocate for:

The implementation of Ohio’s Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Grant and the successful development of the 3rd Grade Reading Guarantee that promotes:

• Access to and retention in high quality early learning programs for children.

• Data sharing between early learning providers and the K-12 system to track meaningful student outcomes.

• Engaging and supporting parents so they are strong advocates and partners in the educational and economic success of their children.

• Ongoing investments in funding streams that help families afford child care, including Early Head Start and Head Start, the Child Care Development Block Grant, and Temporary Assistance for Needy Families.