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Blog | | Early Edge California

Early Edge Hosts Spring Educator Advisory Group Meeting

Early Edge California convened its Educator Advisory Group in a virtual meeting on Monday, April 1st. This was our largest meeting via Zoom to date, with a total of 28 educators across the mixed-delivery system, with representation from the Bay Area, Fresno, and Los Angeles. The meeting provided an opportunity for educators to share their feedback and provide input on a series of timely discussion prompts. 

Moment of Silence in Honor of Renaldo Sanders

The Early Edge team and the Educator Advisory Group held a moment of silence in honor of Renaldo Sanders, a long-time member of the group and the Advisory Group Leadership Council. Participants were also able to share a few words about Renaldo; she is remembered for being a champion, a leader, and an inspiration to those who knew her. Learn more about Renaldo, her passion for helping children and families, and being an advocate for child care providers.

Updates from Early Edge 

The meeting began with participants learning about relevant updates from Early Edge since the last series of regional, in-person meetings that began in November 2023 and wrapped up in January 2024. In response to recent requests from the advisory group members, the Early Edge team shared a brief presentation about the Multilingual Learning Toolkit that highlighted the key features of this free, open-source website for supporting PreK-3rd grade multilingual children. 

The advisory group learned more details about Early Edge’s legislative priorities for the year: with an overview of our co-sponsored bills, AB 1947 and AB 2268; updates on new federal funding of $1B available for child care and Head Start; the cost of care model for child care; and AB 1930 and AB 2476, two of the bills that the organization is supporting. Participants had the opportunity to ask questions and share initial feedback following the legislative updates.

Connecting Policy with Practice

The majority of the meeting centered around facilitated small group discussions where participants were assigned to relevant breakout rooms and asked to provide their feedback on three key topics: Transitional Kindergarten (TK) implementation, the Dual Language Learner (DLL) identification process in California State Preschool Programs (CSPPs), and the mixed-delivery system in California.

In addition to gaining timely feedback on policy and programmatic priorities from the small group discussions, Early Edge also had the opportunity to hear directly from educators on what was top of mind for them related to Early Care and Education. The following themes emerged:

  • Importance of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion: Ensuring that all children and their families are given the opportunity to access quality Early Learning and that children receive fair and equitable treatment. 
  • The need for systems of support: Offering integrated and inclusive systems of supports to families, beginning at birth through third grade.
  • The need for equitable funding and supports across programs: Better pay and compensation for educators across the mixed-delivery system (including CSPP teachers and infant and toddler teachers), and that supports are available in the program (adequately-staffed classrooms).
  • Access to mental health services and supports: Identifying and uplifting available resources for educators and the children and families in their care.

The next rounds of Educator Advisory Group meetings will occur via Zoom in the summer and in-person in the fall of 2024. Early Edge always values the insights we receive from our Advisory Group members. We will be seeking their input and incorporating their feedback in our work as we move forward with our policy and advocacy efforts this year. Thank you to all who took the time to participate in our meetings!

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