Archive for the ‘Election’ Category

GOV Forum logoCouldn’t make it to our gubernatorial candidates forum? Catch up with our Storify version of the event. It’s a collection of tweets that sketches the forum’s social media story. This Storify includes photos and one original work of art.

Be sure to follow Strategies for Children on Twitter @EarlyEd4All. And remember to keep tweeting the candidates during election season. Let them know that early education and care should be one of their top priorities.

The candidates’ Twitter handles:

Joe Avellone                  @AvelloneForGov

Charlie Baker                @CharlieforGov

Don Berwick                 @berwickforMA

Martha Coakley             @marthacoakley

Evan Falchuk                @efalchuk

Mark Fisher                   @markfisher2014

Steve Grossman            @SteveGrossmanMA

Juliette Kayyem            @juliettekayyem

Jeff McCormick              @JMacForGov


Other useful handles and hashtags:








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GOV Forum logoIn a forum at UMass Boston on Saturday, eight of the candidates in the Massachusetts race for governor made news by agreeing that the commonwealth should improve the quality of preschool programs and expand access to them.

This consensus adds to the growing political support for early education and care both here in Massachusetts and nationally. Ten years ago, research on the benefits of high-quality pre-k were not widely understood, nor part of the public discourse. Today, policymakers and candidates understand that these programs are essential first steps in educating children and preparing them to succeed in the state’s high-tech economy.

Sponsored by Strategies for Children and more than two dozen other organizations (see program agenda for full sponsor list), the “Early Childhood and Education: Closing the Achievement and Opportunity Gaps – 2014 Gubernatorial Candidates Forum” gave candidates the opportunity to share their vision for educating the state’s youngest children. It was a chance to hear how the next governor of Massachusetts might reshape the landscape of early education and care. (more…)

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Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

As we wrote last week in Part One of this blog, the Ninth Annual Wheelock Community Dialogue on Early Education and Care called on the field to: unite; develop an agenda; and tell a compelling story that will inspire policymakers — especially the next governor of Massachusetts — to commit to a grand plan for improving the commonwealth’s early education and care system.

Interactive Dialogue Groups

After the keynote speakers, the audience broke into smaller interactive dialogue groups that covered a range of topics, including:

– family engagement

– assessments

– infants and toddlers

– play


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Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

Photo: Alyssa Haywoode for Strategies for Children

“I’d like to welcome our commissioner who has come… We are thrilled to see so many of our Wheelock alums… Mayor Clare Higgins is back by popular demand!” said Wheelock College President Jackie Jenkins-Scott as she welcomed all the participants who came to her school for the “Ninth Annual Community Dialogue on Early Education and Care: Our Children’s Future — Time for a New Plan.”

Higgins, the former mayor of Northampton, attended last year’s dialogue; and this year she was joined by advocates, educators, and policy analysts who spoke to an audience of 200 about how best to bring high-quality early education and care to more of Massachusetts’ children.

The goal for the day was reinforced throughout the three-hour event: Unite; develop an agenda; and tell a compelling story that will inspire policymakers — especially the next governor of Massachusetts — to commit to a grand plan for improving the commonwealth’s early education and care system. (more…)

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walsh 1

Boston’s Mayor-elect Marty Walsh
Photo: Strategies for Children

Two new mayors will take the oath of office in both Boston and New York. So expect to see these men — Marty Walsh and Bill de Blasio — change the face of education in their cities, a news story in Education Week advises.

“Both cities’ school systems are under mayoral control. Both new mayors will select new executives to run the schools,” the article says. “And both cities still have enormous education challenges to tackle. Large achievement gaps—including in graduation rates—stubbornly persist between black and Latino students and their white and Asian peers.”

As Mayor Thomas Menino leaves office and Walsh steps in, look for “more subtle changes to the 57,000-student school system, which has generally experienced less upheaval in its school improvement efforts than other major urban districts,” the Education Week article says. (more…)

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Marty Walsh  Photo: Strategies for Children

Marty Walsh
Photo: Strategies for Children

Now that Marty Walsh is the mayor-elect, he’s eager to get democratic conversations started, so he’s launched boston14.org, a transition website where people can share their ideas about the future of Boston.

“The exciting but hard work to continue to move Boston forward begins now. I ask for your help, your ideas and your energy to help me, as we make Boston the best she can be,” Walsh says in a quote on the website. “Ours is not an easy task, but by working together, as One Boston, our great city can prosper like never before.

Together, we will make Boston the hub of opportunity for all.”

As he explained in last month’s mayor’s forum on early education at the Children’s Museum, Walsh understands that early education and care programs can educate parents and help children.

Now advocates can use the “Share Your Ideas” section of Walsh’s website to make comments or even upload PDFs. This is a great opportunity to let Walsh know that high-quality early education care and third grade reading proficiency should be among his highest priorities.

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Election Day Results

Yesterday was election day in communities across Massachusetts and the country. For results for your community, please visit your local city or town website.

Congratulations to the next mayor of Boston, Representative Marty Walsh. We look forward to working with you on behalf of young children and families. Thanks to John Connolly for highlighting the importance of education during the campaign.

Also, congratulations to Holyoke Mayor Alex Morse on his reelection.

MA readers, be sure to send notes of congratulations to the elected officials who won in your community. This is a fantastic opportunity to build a relationship and share your commitment to young children.

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Photo: United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley

Photo: United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley

More than 200 people came to the Boston Children’s Museum last Thursday night to attend “Conversation with the Boston Mayoral Candidates – Early Childhood and Education: Closing the Achievement and Opportunity Gaps.”  Strategies for Children, Boston Children’s Museum, Thrive in 5 and United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley cosponsored the event along with 31 other organizations.

Both candidates – City Councilor John Connolly and State Representative Marty Walsh — participated, each on stage separately. Candidates answered questions posed by the night’s moderator, WBZ political reporter Jon Keller, and from the audience, which included early educators, providers, pediatricians, college students, professors of higher education, teachers, advocates, and citizens.

As Carolyn Lyons, the president and CEO of Strategies for Children, explained to the audience in her introduction, the forum builds on the momentum that has been fueled by early education proposals from Governor Deval Patrick and other governors,  the Massachusetts legislature and President Obama’s bold proposal to expand preschool programs nationally.

The candidates were asked to come prepared to articulate their vision for Boston’s children and families and discuss what they would do for children and families should they become mayor. They responded by (more…)

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Mayor Logo

This Thursday, October 24, from 6:00 – 9:00 p.m., the Boston Children’s Museum hosts a Conversation with the Boston Mayoral Candidates. Jon Keller, WBZ-TV News’ Political Analyst will moderate the conversation.

To retain Boston’s status as an economic leader and hub of innovation in the years ahead, the next Mayor must improve educational outcomes for the city’s children. The achievement gap is evident long before children enter school, and we will not succeed in closing it unless we target resources to improve early learning and healthy child development.

Join us for a conversation with the two candidates running for Mayor and hear more about their vision for children and families in Boston.

This event is sponsored by: Boston Children’s Museum, Strategies for Children, Thrive in 5, and United Way of MA Bay and Merrimack Valley.

Co-sponsors to date include:  ABCD ● Associated Early Care and Education ● BOSTnet  ● Boston After School and Beyond ● Boston Association for the Education of Young Children ● Boston Children’s Hospital  ● Boston Opportunity Agenda ● Boys and Girls Club of Dorchester ● Catholic Charities of Boston  ● Cradles to Crayons ● The Children’s Trust ● Dudley Street Neighborhood Initiative ● Ellis Memorial & Eldredge House, Inc ● Families First Parenting Programs ● Family Nurturing Center of Massachusetts   ● Family Service of Greater Boston ● Friends of the Children – Boston ● Generations Incorporated ● Horizons for Homeless Children ● Jumpstart ● MA Afterschool Partnership ● MA Association for Early Education and Care ● Massachusetts Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics ● MA Kids Count ● MA Head Start Association ● Raising A Reader MA ● Reach Out and Read ● Room to Grow ● United South End Settlements ● Wheelock College

For more information, please contact tdosremedios@strategiesforchildren.org

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Photo: Alessandra Hartkopf for Strategies for Children

Photo: Alessandra Hartkopf for Strategies for Children

Over the summer, the organizers who run Boston Ed Blog – an effort to keep education at the forefront of the mayoral election — asked the candidates to discuss their views on early education.

Specifically, Ed Blog asked that the candidates: “Tell us how you see early childhood education fitting into the larger education pipeline and what you have been able to do in your career to expand or improve or raise awareness about early childhood care and education (for children from birth through age five). Since every candidate has been in some position of power in his/her career already, please do not focus on what you WILL do, but what you HAVE done.”

Ed Blog also asked candidates to answer its readers’ questions, which covered the full spectrum of education, including how to help low-income parents find tutoring, afterschool and summer programs and how to support students who live in public housing.

Listed in alphabetical order, here is a sample of what the seven candidates who responded had to say. Please go to the Ed Blog’s Cradle to Career Learning post to read their full responses.

Boston residents, be sure to vote in the primary on Tuesday, September 24, 2013. The top two candidates will advance to the general election, which will be held on Tuesday, November 5, 2013. (more…)

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