Advancing Early Childhood: Multiple Approaches, Common Goal. July 2015 Grantee Convening

The W. Clement & Jessie V. Stone Foundation is committed to improving the healthy development of children by supporting innovative programs, initiatives, and policies that benefit children and families. In July 2015, the Stone Foundation reaffirmed this commitment and provided an opportunity for its early childhood development grantees to come together to discuss specific early childhood topics and foster cross-grantee connections. Recognizing that the field can make significant progress with many funders acting together, Stone invited foundation colleagues to join the discussions. The abundant opportunity for growth and progress in the early childhood field was evidenced by the rich and collaborative discussions. This report offers a synopsis of key issues that emerged and highlights grantee work that addresses some of the significant challenges currently facing the early childhood field.

The meeting focused on the teachers, leaders and other adults in early care and education. This focus was chosen because it allowed for cross-sharing among Stone grantees, each of whom had made important contributions in this area. The topic was timely due to the Institute of Medicine and National Research Council of the National Academies April 2015 release of Transforming the Workforce for Children Birth Through Age 8: A Unifying Foundation. And, last, leaders at the Stone Foundation and in the field agree that the teachers and leaders are a key to improving outcomes for the youngest children, particularly those most in need of supports to ensure school success.