Early Childhood Advocates Rock State Capitol

We came. We saw. We did a lot of good for Tennessee kids.

On February 19th, TQEE advocates from across the state joined together to stand for policies to increase the number of high-quality, affordable childcare seats, expand Pre-K and improve early literacy proficiency, to name a few.

As Mayor Julian McTizic of Bolivar put it:

“The future of our community and the future of our state depends on early childhood education.”

Ninety advocates from across the state including educators, Pre-K directors, elected officials and parents, met with more than 70 state legislators to discuss the TQEE’s early education priorities.

Addressing the need to expand pre-k in rural distressed communities, Mayor Jeff Griggs of Lexington had this to say:

“We need to let our legislators know that we want them to fund pre-k. If children aren’t educated, then we won’t have jobs for them when they’re adults.”

Cindy Hogg from Methodist LeBonheur Healthcare spoke before the Shelby County Legislative Delegation about the need for more school nurses.

“There is a disparity [in access to a school nurse] among kids from lower incomes. They come to school with more needs. Having a school nurse gives another health care provider who has the chance to see those children and help to address their concerns,” said Hogg.

Because of the passionate and convincing advocacy of our Day on the Hill participants, most of our legislation made substantial progress through the committee system. Unfortunately, the bills are held in committee because the legislature was forced to recess in response to COVID-19.

Know that we will be ready to respond and maintain our momentum, with your help, as soon as the legislature returns. Meanwhile, keep an eye out for alerts and invite your friends to join our coalition.

You might also be interested in: Serve and Return: How Child Development Starts at Home

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