Have a Heart for Kids Day rally, 2015

Early Learning

Policy Changes Included in the Early Start Act

In 2015, Washington’s legislature passed and Governor Inslee signed the Early Start Act (HB 1491). The bipartisan, historic Early Start Act enacts unprecedented policies and resources to help ensure all children get the great start they need. The Early Start Act includes numerous provisions designed at increasing access to quality care for all children, particularly children in low-income families and children of color.

Adam Wed, 09/09/2015 - 20:47
Raise Revenue: Our Tax System is Endangering Kids

All children deserve a great start in life. But our state’s tax system puts too many of them in harm’s way.

Revenues as a proportion of the economy have shrunk over the past 15 years, resulting in cuts to basic services. Children in communities of color have been disproportionately impacted by these cuts.

Ending these cuts boosts our economy. Ending the 25 percent cut to State Food Assistance would generate more than $17 million in economic activity through June 2017.

siobhan Tue, 04/14/2015 - 16:58

Invest in Early Learning in 2015

High quality early learning is a targeted investment that reaps huge returns: proven outcomes in school and in life. Every child deserves the opportunity for a great start. Pass the Early Start Act with culturally relevant care provisions and funding needed to close the opportunity gap.

The bipartisan Early Start Act (HB 1491/SB 5452)

Sponsored by Rep. Ruth Kagi (D-Seattle) and Sen. Steve Litzow (R-Mercer Island), the Early Start Act aims to expand access to high quality early learning, particularly for children furthest from opportunity.

Early Learning Action Alliance: 2014 legislative agenda


High quality early learning lays a foundation for a strong future. But too many young children don’t get a chance to build the fundamental brain architecture that allows them to thrive in school and in life.

Convened by the Children's Alliance, members of the Early Learning Action Alliance (ELAA) are united by the belief that all children in Washington state deserve to have the opportunities and support they need in their first five years of life to be prepared for school and a bright future.

Adam Fri, 01/17/2014 - 13:34

New Data Shows Critical Need to Invest in Children's Early Years

New national data shows that state and federal policies fail to connect thousands of Washington children to the opportunities they need for success in school and in life.
The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s latest KIDS COUNT policy report, “The First Eight Years: Giving Kids a Foundation for Lifetime Success,” presents a strong case for investing in the early years of a child's life.

Innovative National Early Learning Plan Means More Opportunities for Washington State


Brains are like buildings – they start with a foundation. Birth through age 5 is a crucial time to give children the kinds of enriching experiences and environments they need to build a foundation for success – both in school and in life. But too many of our youngest learners still don’t have access to high quality early childhood education. They are missing out on opportunities that will help them thrive, and this hurts all of us.

Expand Access to High-Quality Early Learning

High-quality early learning lays a foundation for a strong future. But too many young children still don’t get a chance to build the fundamental brain architecture that allows them to thrive in school and in life. Washington policymakers should:

Expand ECEAP by 1,500 children in the upcoming
biennium and work toward the legislature’s commitment
of full implementation by 2018

Make a simultaneous investment in targeted, voluntary,
comprehensive programs for infants and toddlers at
greatest risk of academic failure.

Expand Access to High-Quality Child Care Pass HB 1671/SB 5595

Science tells us that, long before they reach kindergarten, children lay down the mental foundation for future learning. When we fail to surround young children with quality opportunities to build that foundation, it’s much harder for them to catch up later. Child care providers want the best for children in their care, but they need resources to improve and maintain quality. Investments now can lead to benefits for children, families, and society in the future. Chart a path for increasing access to high-quality care that includes: