notes from Amy
We have been so encouraged to see local communities come together and develop strong parterships between early education programs serving children birth-to-five and public schools. This collaboration does a great deal of good for the children in your community. At the end of the day, they are all our kids.
Whether it’s ESSA, next-generation MCAS, or preschool expansion planning, our young children and families have much to gain from collaboration between early educators, home visitors, teachers, directors, principals, superintendents, school committee members, mayors and others.
Alignment along the birth through eight continuum is key. This can take many forms: joint professional development between public and private preschool teachers; community-based school readiness efforts, like those funded through EEC’s CFCE grant, and local early literacy campaigns such as the more than 380 in the national Campaign for Grade-Level Reading.
If you work for a school district or charter school, I challenge you to reach out to a community-based early learning program, ask for a tour, share curriculum ideas, or plan an event together. If you work at an EEC-licensed program – I challenge you to make a new connection with public schools, visit a classroom and learn more about the transition from early education.
And of course, leadership matters and sets the tone for collaboration. The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has launched a nation-wide search for a new commissioner to succeed the late Mitchell Chester. The process is on-going and the Board welcomes public input about the search, including suggestions for candidate qualifications. Input may be submitted to CommSearch@doe.mass.edu for review. Please take this opportunity to provide feedback to the Board.