Parents should receive information on relevant research on effective practices in readable and useful forms. Parents should not only be informed, but also should be involved in populareducationtips programming decisions about the education of their children.
In addition to the broad-based issues of universal daycare, professional development, and parental involvement, we have the following specific recommendations for moving forward with an advocacy action agenda for universal quality childcare and preschool education.
– Convince policymakers that: (a) early childhood programs can be cost effective; (b) the extent and quality of programs are crucial to achieving success; and (c) programs can be successful at a relatively small amount of cost if integrated into existing structures.
– Initiate discussions between early childhood education advocates and members of the National Parent Teacher Association. Form coalitions with other advocacy groups to create better political climates for children and their families.
– Identify champions of the childcare and early childhood education movement who are influential. Promote leadership advocacy for early childhood education.
– Focus on what sells. Advocates need to get the media on the side of quality childcare and early childhood education. Inform the public about relevant research on what works in providing quality childcare and preschool education.
– Use new technologies and mass communication avenues to forge a national dialogue on the mandate for quality childcare and preschool education for all, and to foster increased parent-school connections.
– Work to eradicate the risk factors that continue to challenge and mitigate against human capital investment and confront racial and social stratification. Examine the assumptions behind the term “at risk” and devise a new term that reduces stereotyping.
– Utilize the research on preventing reading difficulties in young children to minimize severe academic problems in the primary grades.
– Improve articulation alignment of what is taught in colleges and the professional expertise required for a quality childcare and preschool education force. There is a critical need to increase collaboration and coordination between higher education institutions that provide preservice education of childcare and preschool education professionals and childcare and preschool education providing agencies.