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The most rapid period of development in human life happens from birth to eight. End of third grade outcomes predict:  academic achievement  career success.

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Presentation on theme: "The most rapid period of development in human life happens from birth to eight. End of third grade outcomes predict:  academic achievement  career success."— Presentation transcript:

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2 The most rapid period of development in human life happens from birth to eight. End of third grade outcomes predict:  academic achievement  career success Why Birth to Eight

3  National Security  Global Competiveness  Economic Well-Being  Crime Reduction  Thriving Communities If you care about these issues, you care about child development. Why Should You Care?

4 Military leaders, business executives, and law enforcement officers are calling for greater investments to ensure our national security, reduce crime and to keep us globally competitive. Don’t Take My Word For It

5 National Security General Wesley Clark, General Hugh Shelton and senior military officials say our national security depends on early childhood investments.

6 75% of Americans of 17 to 24 cannot meet the military’s eligibility requirements. In NC, 23% of high school graduates score too low on the Armed Forces Qualification Test to join the Army.

7 Crime Prevention Law enforcement officials say the best strategy to reduce crime is to invest in early childhood.

8 At-risk children that didn’t attend quality pre-k were 5 times more likely to become chronic criminal offenders by age 27.

9 In FY , the NC General Assembly appropriated in state general funds $1.38 billion to the Division of Corrections and $266 million to the Division of Child Development.

10 Economic Prosperity The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says our economic future depends on early childhood investments.

11 60% of NC employers reported gaps in communications skills. Close to half of NC employers reported deficiencies in critical thinking and problem-solving abilities. AND

12 Faith National faith-based organizations such as Shepherding the Next Generation and the Global Network of Religions for Children are advocating for greater investments in early care and learning.

13 “My faith calls me to ensure that each child in every community has the opportunity to become the very best person God has created him or her to be.” Reverend Tommy James, First Baptist Church Burnsville, North Carolina

14 To understand why they care, we need to talk about how brains and children develop. Why do they care?

15 Child Development The foundation for all future learning is built during early childhood. A dynamic, interactive process that is not predetermined.

16 The brain is one of the only organs not fully developed at birth. Brain architecture is forming during a child’s early years.

17 Early experiences form brain architecture

18 There are only 2000 days to get it right.

19 Experiences Build Brain Architecture

20 Early experiences build brain architecture  Brains are built, not born.  There is rapid growth, then the brain prunes.  Connections that are used a lot are strengthened; those that are not, pruned.  This process shapes how brains are wired.

21 More than academics As essential as they are, we aren’t born with the skills that enable us to control impulses, make plans, and stay focused. We are born with the potential to develop these capacities.

22 Learning to play with others Making up games and rules Learning to follow rules Early exploration Language skills and improved teamwork Negotiation skills Sound ethics Creative thinking and problem solving

23 We know what works! There is decades of research and numerous studies, including longitudinal randomized trials with more than 40 years of data.

24 Build a Strong Foundation  Good Health  Strong families  Quality learning experiences

25 High Quality Early Learning NC 3 rd graders have higher standardized reading and math scores and lower special education placement rates in counties that received more funding for Smart Start and More at Four (NC PreK) when those children were younger.

26 High Quality Early Learning  High quality early childhood programs increase high school graduation rates by as much as 44%.  A 5% increase in male high school graduation rates is estimated to save North Carolina $153 million per year in incarceration rates.  Participants in high quality early childhood programs have higher earnings, pay more taxes and are less likely to rely on government assistance.

27 Good Health Children that participated in a high quality early learning program that included health screenings and nutrition components had better adult health and less chronic disease, including lower levels of hypertension, metabolic and syndrome and obesity in their mid-30s.

28 Strong Families Home visiting programs - voluntary programs provided by qualified professionals to parents, prenatally and/or with young children – reduce health care costs, improve school readiness and success, reduce need for remedial education and increase family self- sufficiency.

29 Every $1 invested in early education produces a 7-10% return.

30 Early Investments: ROI

31  Brains are built, not born.  Birth to 8 is a critical developmental period.  Children’s earliest experiences shape how their brains are wired creating either a strong or weak foundation for all future learning.  End of third grade outcomes predict academic and career success.  We know what works.

32 Act Now! It’s Easy! Talk with one person this week about the importance of the early years for children and our state. Sign the commitment to young children at and encourage others to do the same! Host a presentation at your workplace, civic organization or congregation. Keep up-to-date on issues impacting young children by signing up for First 2000 days alerts

33 For more information about the First 2000 Days Tracy Zimmerman twitter.com/tracyzimmerman Lisa Finaldi NC Early Childhood Foundation (919)


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