2011 Michigan Early Childhood Legislative Briefing
Michigan Leaders convene at HighScope
Michigan’s investment in young children is a top priority — this was the conclusion of a group of more than two dozen Michigan legislative and business leaders who gathered at HighScope’s Ypsilanti headquarters on Monday, March 21. It was sponsored by HighScope, Michigan’s Children, The Center for Michigan, and the Early Childhood Investment Corporation of Michigan.
The event included presentations by early childhood experts giving evidence that investment in early childhood education is key to building an educated and skilled workforce for Michigan.
“The first days, weeks, and years of a child’s life are critical learning periods,” said Jack Kresnak, president and CEO of Michigan’s Children. “From an educational and economic viewpoint, we all benefit by seizing this period to optimize learning and later earnings.”
Dr. Larry Schweinhart, HighScope President and lead researcher and author of the ground-breaking. Perry Preschool study, said that such investments are particularly important during difficult economic times “when families are struggling most and public expenditures must be on programs and services proven to work and yield high returns.” He told the group that the Perry study has become a “public policy tool” for breaking the poverty cycle and helping children do better in school and becoming productive adults.
The administration of Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder has expressed a commitment to intervening in the lives of at-risk children by protecting early education funds in its budget proposal.
Here is Dr. Schweinhart’s report on the briefing and a video of the Lt. Gov. Calley's remarks.