Children's Alliance News Feed

White House would expand our state’s early learning success

 

President Barack Obama wants to put real money behind his Plan for Early Education for All Americans. His proposed budget for federal fiscal year 2014 opts for smart new investments in a comprehensive birth-to-5 education plan.

His multi-pronged strategy will expand access to and improve the quality of early childhood education by:

What makes a good budget for Washington kids?

 

A week after the state Senate, the state House of Representatives passed its budget on Friday, April 5. Negotiations between budget leaders in the House, the Senate and the Governor’s office have begun.

What are the key ingredients of a good state budget for kids?

Hungry children get support in the State Senate

 

Hungry children gained the unprecedented support of a majority of the State Senate this week. As the News Tribune's Politics blog reported on Tuesday, 25 of 49 Senators co-signed a letter asking budget leaders to fully fund State Food Assistance.

As the Senators wrote:

A missed opportunity to adopt a smart solution


The state legislature has missed an opportunity to get more kids and families the preventive oral health care they need.

The dental access legislation, House Bill 1516 and Senate Bill 5433 did not move forward out of their policy committees, despite a large and diverse statewide coalition of health care advocates and the leadership of Rep. Eileen Cody (D-34th) and Sen. David Frockt (D-46th). The Washington State Dental Association is ignoring the input of its own member dentists and is blocking an innovative and evidence-based solution to our state’s dental access crisis.

A licensed dental practitioner remains a viable part of the solution – for the oral health of Washington’s underserved communities and as a workforce opportunity for dedicated dental professionals.

Dental practitioners are already serving tens of thousands of patients in other states. Watch this short video to learn more:

Early investments pay the biggest dividends

toddler
State lawmakers are talking a lot about how to fulfill our Constitutional promise of educational opportunity to Washington’s children. Many of them recognize that we get the greatest return on our educational investment when we fill classrooms with children who are ready to learn.

Brains are like buildings; they rest on the foundation laid down by a child’s earliest experiences. That’s why sound nutrition, healthy mothers, stable living situations and primary care are all so essential. And also why early learning is so important.

So it’s been a great achievement for the Children’s Alliance and our friends to push a new bill through its chamber of origin and on to the Senate, where it will be heard in committee this Friday.