Who We Are
The Early Learning Action Alliance is a broad coalition of organizations representing a diverse array of Washington nonprofits, professional associations, businesses, and industries. We 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. View our members.
Why Early Learning
Children are born learning. Evidence shows that high-quality early learning in culturally and linguistically responsive environments, characterized by nurturing relationships and rich opportunities for play and exploration, lays the foundation for essential social, emotional, and cognitive skills. High-quality early learning is an essential part of any strategy to close the opportunity gap facing too many of Washington’s children in low-income families and children of color.
All children deserve the chance to succeed in life. Yet more than half of the children in Washington state enter kindergarten without the basic skills they need to thrive. Quality child care, preschool, and family care options remain out of reach for hundreds of thousands of middle- and low-income families. Too many Washington parents do not have access to high-quality, culturally and linguistically responsive care that they can afford.
Our Long-Term Priorities
We need researched, market-driven policies that will give all young children the skills they need to start school ready to succeed. These policies should support parents as their children’s first and most important teachers and provide a range of culturally relevant support services to families who need them.
A range of top quality child care, family care and preschool options must be available to all families. Professional development opportunities must be accessible to the thousands of child care professionals across the state. Together, we can help make Washington state a place where all families and young children have the opportunities they need to thrive.
When we close the opportunity gap, we’ll narrow the school achievement gap, which will result in higher employment levels later on in life. Communities that prioritize early learning see substantial social and economic returns. Smart investments in early learning yield positive returns for families and communities across Washington state.
Our 2022 Legislative Agenda
Read our complete 2022 Legislative Agenda (PDF).
In 2021 we worked to achieve the passage of the Fair Start for Kids Act (SB 5237), which represents the largest investment in early learning in state history. This legislation takes a comprehensive approach to affordability and access to early learning, with dramatic new investments in Working Connections Child Care, ECEAP, home visiting and other programs of support for families with young children. Designed to promote equity, the act creates additional supports for culturally and linguistically diverse early learning.
Membership is open to any organization that agrees with our mission and guiding principles and is not a target of our advocacy at the state or federal level. For membership details, please read the Early Learning Action Alliance Charter (PDF).
To learn more about membership, please contact ELAA Director Hana Gregory at Hana [dot] Gregory [at] childrensalliance [dot] org
The Early Learning Action Alliance is convened by the Children’s Alliance.
The Arc of King County * Child Care Action Council * Child Care Aware of Washington * Child Care Action Council * Child Care Resources * Child Haven * Children’s Alliance * Children's Campaign Fund * Children’s Home Society of Washington and Trust Foundation * Children's Therapy Center * Columbia City Consulting * Committee for Children * Community Day Center for Children, Inc * Early Care and Education Consortium * Economic Opportunity Institute * Educare Seattle * First 5 FUNdamentals * Foundation for Tacoma Students * Help Me Grow Pierce County * League of Education Voters * Mission: Readiness * MomsRising * Neighborhood House * Nurse Family Partnership * Partners for Our Children * Project Child Success * Puget Sound Educational Service District * Ready Nation * Save the Children * Save the Children Action Network * School’s Out Washington * Sound Child Care Solutions * Southeast Seattle Education Coalition * Start Early * Teach for America - Washington * Tiny Trees Preschool * United Way of King County * United Ways of the Pacific Northwest * Washington Association for the Education of Young Children * Washington Association for Infant Mental Health * Washington Childcare Centers Association * Washington Federation of Independent Schools * Washington Home Visiting Coalition * Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility * Washington State Alliance of YMCAs * Washington State Association of Head Start & ECEAP * Washington State Budget & Policy Center * Washington State Community Action Partnership * Washington STEM * Washington Communities for Children * Washington State Parent Ambassadors * WithinReach