Have a Heart for Kids Day rally, 2015

Honoring State Representatives for work to expand access to high quality early learning

Adam 08/20/14

 

Children are born learning. Access to high quality early learning is critical to closing the gap for children who start out with fewer opportunities. An increasing number of lawmakers understand that early learning builds strong kids and strong communities.

Last week the Early Learning Action Alliance recognized State Representative David Sawyer (Spanaway, 29th District) for his commitment to the first five years of a child’s life.

Sawyer received a Bronze Crayon Award. The Early Learning Action Alliance is convened by the Children’s Alliance.

The award was presented to Rep. Sawyer at the First 5 Family FUN Fair at Bethel Learning Center by Susan Barbeau, Executive Director of First Five FUNdamentals, Pierce County’s early learning regional coalition. The event was attended by families from throughout Pierce County.

“It is an honor to receive a Bronze Crayon Award,” said Representative Sawyer. “It is important to me that as we expand access to quality early learning programs, we serve areas with the highest need first and make sure all of our children have access to high quality early learning,”

Since 2010, the Early Learning Action Alliance has recognized the work of legislators in early learning with Crayon Awards. Rep. Sawyer is among 13 legislators across the state receiving Crayon Awards for their work on early learning policy. These leaders understand that children need high-quality, culturally relevant care to help them become resilient, successful learners. Investments in the first years of a child’s life are critical to closing the gap for children starting out with fewer opportunities.

While Crayon Awards recognize achievements over the past two years, they also represent the expectation that legislators will be even stronger supporters of early learning in the future.

Three types of awards are given: Gold, Silver and Bronze Crayon Awards. Gold Crayon Award recipients are leaders on the vanguard who champion efforts to expand access to high quality early learning opportunities. Silver Crayon Award recipients are steadfast advocates who further the cause and cast their votes for early learning issues. Recipients of the Bronze Crayon Award are rising early learning leaders; the Early Learning Action Alliance counts on their growing support.