Find out what we’ve been up to in the latest edition of our Childwatch Newsletter – Read it here.

Wow! Build Back Better!

 

Historic and Life Changing 

More than four million Pennsylvania children in our state alone will live better lives with Build Back Better.

This historic legislation that passed the U.S. House this morning will help kids throughout the Commonwealth – children in both Democratic and Republican homes.

Build Back Better will bring enormous social and economic value to Pennsylvania. It’s exactly what investing in children really looks like. It’s not a patchwork of fixes; it is a seismic policy shift that recognizes the importance of early education as a fundamental contributor to our country’s success. 

The work isn’t over, though. The U.S. Senate will consider the House-approved legislation and its success depends on people like you calling your senators to express your support. Senator Toomey (202-224-4254) and Senator Casey (202-224-6324) need to hear from us all now.  

It’s ironic that while Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy droned on for more than eight hours last night to delay the passage of Build Back Better, the new Racial Equity Early Childhood Provider Council met for the first time with the intention of advancing change.

Children First created this Council to tap into the expertise of diverse early childhood educators and improve the quality of programs and services for young children and their families. The Council will identify ways that our early childhood systems can nurture and support healthy development of all children, especially Black and Brown children who continue to struggle. 

Build Back Better sets the stage for broad, national change, but its on the local level where the rubber hits the road. Change really happens in families and neighborhoods. Last night, the 50-member Council came together with hope and openness, ideas and enthusiasm. (See the list.) While McCarthy was predicting hellfire and doom, providers were coming together to support one another and commit themselves to a better future for children. The difference could not have been starker. 

By combining the federal powerhouse of Build Back Better with the local expertise of dedicated early education professionals, we are using all of our resources to meet the needs of children and their families while working toward racial equity.

History is happening live in PA at the Fair Funding Trial. Host a Watch Party for your family, friends, colleagues, clubs, congregations, etc. and follow the excitement! Sign up here.


“I’m not [saying that] all of the school buildings…are the Taj Mahal,” but children have “chairs to sit in, desks or tables to write at, walls and roofs, working plumbing.” 

William Penn students, with a little help from Children First, are sharing their experiences, frustrations, and hopes for future education funding on a great new student-run podcast, PENNding Funds.

Listen on iTunes, Spotify, or the William Penn website.

“I can’t wait until we actually have universal Pre-K and what a difference that will make to jumpstart our children’s education and derail this pipeline to prison that we are suffering with as a society.”

– Congresswoman Madeleine Dean