City of SF Uplifts the Importance of Early Care & Education
On November 17, the San Francisco Board of Education unanimously approved a measure that directs Superintendent Vincent Matthews to begin reopening elementary schools for students with moderate to severe disabilities, as well as all students in preschool, transitional kindergarten, kindergarten and first grade in January 2021.
This directive clearly highlights the essential nature of Early Care & Education (ECE) in our city. The pandemic has revealed, more than ever before, that quality, dependable child care is central not only to rebuilding San Francisco’s economy, but to the well-being of our community’s children.
At Children’s Council we know that 90% of a child’s brain development occurs before age 5. San Francisco’s action to resume ECE programs shows that our city representatives share in our commitment to our community’s most vulnerable children.
According to Children’s Council board member Farris Page, a leading clinician and practitioner in early childhood mental health, “It’s now well documented that the pandemic is creating a troubling learning gap in children, particularly young children in communities of color.
“These are children whose families are struggling to provide basic resources and have limited access to technology. By prioritizing this age group, we are cradling the children who need it most. The absence of learning is a loss that cannot be recaptured.”
As a community, we must meet the needs of families and early educators during this pandemic and beyond. Additional child care dollars must accompany the city’s efforts to provide families with quality, dependable care and education for their children.
Farris quotes iconic children’s rights activist Marian Wright Edelman, who said: “‘For those children who will grab the hand of anybody kind enough to offer it.’ Children’s Council extends that metaphorical hand.”
During these difficult times, Children’s Council is offering thousands of helping hands by connecting families with child care, and providing early educators with financial support, personal protection equipment and cleaning supplies.
But we need your help! Extend a hand to our city’s children – make a gift now to our Year-End Campaign, Without Child Care, San Francisco Doesn’t Work.