Children are born with a thirst for knowledge and a desire to learn. It’s these early years, the formative ones, that are the time to lay the foundation for a child’s future, to mitigate potential achievement gaps, and set children up for greater success in school and life.
But education is not limited to specific hours of the day, nor does learning only occur behind a desk. Early education encompasses experiences at home, in early childhood programs, schools, and communities. Regardless of the setting, increasing high quality early education is an important step toward a more inclusive society.
Our funding focuses on overlooked components of quality early education including early math; family engagement; and dual language learning; as well as evidence, advocacy, and investment in order to ensure that the systems are in place for quality early childhood education.
AREAS OF GRANTMAKING
Effective programs and policies increase children’s exposure to high quality math education at home, in early childhood settings, and in communities. Our grantees inspire greater understanding of early math as a catalyst for, and contributor to, children’s school success and engagement in learning.
A family has the most direct and lasting impact on a child’s learning and development. Connecting children’s learning experiences in early education settings with those at home ensures continuity and enhanced learning. Our grantees work toward achieving meaningful family engagement wherever children are learning.
More and more, young children live in households where multiple languages are spoken. Recent studies tell us that by supporting a child’s home language, we can improve second language development. Our grantees move dual language learners from the periphery to the core of early childhood education policy and practice.
The early childhood field lacks adequate funding to support high-quality programs and services for all children. As a result, we are left with a fragmented and under-resourced system. Children face serious access, participation and opportunity gaps, as well as instruction of uncertain quality, delivered by teachers who barely earn enough to get by. Our grantees work for a higher-quality, better-funded early childhood education field, both nationally and in California.