83.9 F
Charlotte Amalie
Saturday, August 13, 2022
HomeNewsArchivesEarly-Childhood Education Emphasized at Family Connection Anniversary Event

Early-Childhood Education Emphasized at Family Connection Anniversary Event

Dec. 5, 2007 — Over the past year, the Family Connection — a project launched in 2006 through the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands — has helped raise awareness about the importance of early-childhood education and has opened its doors to more than 100 parents, teachers and other child-care providers throughout the community.
That work is only going to continue over the next few years, Family Connection (TFC) workers said Tuesday evening, as Community Foundation board members, donors and a few local residents gathered at the center's location in Vitraco Park Mall to commemorate TFC's one-year anniversary. In addition to continuing its outreach efforts, the Family Connection will work on launching more territory-wide initiatives, including a Leadership in Action program that will establish partnerships with local leaders and public officials.
The Family Connection also intends to begin offering grants to fund early-childhood education programs throughout the territory, and will work to help local childcare centers gain accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Eleven local schools have already committed to becoming NAEYC accredited, said CFVI president Dee Baecher-Brown, speaking during the birthday celebrations.
The spotlight was focused throughout the evening on TFC Director Beth Marshall, who explained that the push for early-childhood education has recently been strengthening throughout the nation.
"Never before has there been a time when so many people are interested in the field and exploring the positive effects of high-quality early-childhood education on the future outcomes of young children," she said.
While millions of children enter kindergarten classrooms every year, not all are given the opportunities and skills needed to succeed in school, Marshall added.
"Even before a child reaches kindergarten age, factors such as poverty, race/ethnicity and home language, among others, influence the child's success at school," she said. "It is realistic to say that the gap in educational achievement starts from the very moment a child is born."
The way to surmount these obstacles is training teachers to be "good early-childhood educators" who can help bridge the achievement gap by "providing children from at-risk environments with social and academic experiences that correlate with school success," Marshall said.
"Preschool is not simply about enrollment — the particulars make all the difference," she said. "Good preschools can rewrite the scripts of children's lives."
The Family Connection promotes the need for early-childhood education by providing programs, tools and other resources necessary to train parents and teachers. TFC has also become a regular meeting space for many community organizations and groups, ranging from local Head Start teachers to the Law Enforcement Planning Commission, Baecher-Brown said.
Rounding out Tuesday's celebrations, CFVI Board Chairman Ricardo Charaf offered an emotional thank you to all of the donors who made building the center possible.
"This is exciting — it's unbelievable what's happening tonight," he said. "You can really see how much we've achieved in a year. We are working hard, and I'll let you know that this is just about the best investment you can make, because every dollar invested in our kids will really help us succeed later on in life."
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Keeping our community informed is our top priority.
If you have a news tip to share, please call or text us at 340-228-8784.




Support local + independent journalism in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Unlike many news organizations, we haven't put up a paywall – we want to keep our journalism as accessible as we can. Our independent journalism costs time, money and hard work to keep you informed, but we do it because we believe that it matters. We know that informed communities are empowered ones. If you appreciate our reporting and want to help make our future more secure, please consider donating.

FROM FACEBOOK

Comments Box SVG iconsUsed for the like, share, comment, and reaction icons
Load more
Dec. 5, 2007 -- Over the past year, the Family Connection -- a project launched in 2006 through the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands -- has helped raise awareness about the importance of early-childhood education and has opened its doors to more than 100 parents, teachers and other child-care providers throughout the community.
That work is only going to continue over the next few years, Family Connection (TFC) workers said Tuesday evening, as Community Foundation board members, donors and a few local residents gathered at the center's location in Vitraco Park Mall to commemorate TFC's one-year anniversary. In addition to continuing its outreach efforts, the Family Connection will work on launching more territory-wide initiatives, including a Leadership in Action program that will establish partnerships with local leaders and public officials.
The Family Connection also intends to begin offering grants to fund early-childhood education programs throughout the territory, and will work to help local childcare centers gain accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Eleven local schools have already committed to becoming NAEYC accredited, said CFVI president Dee Baecher-Brown, speaking during the birthday celebrations.
The spotlight was focused throughout the evening on TFC Director Beth Marshall, who explained that the push for early-childhood education has recently been strengthening throughout the nation.
"Never before has there been a time when so many people are interested in the field and exploring the positive effects of high-quality early-childhood education on the future outcomes of young children," she said.
While millions of children enter kindergarten classrooms every year, not all are given the opportunities and skills needed to succeed in school, Marshall added.
"Even before a child reaches kindergarten age, factors such as poverty, race/ethnicity and home language, among others, influence the child's success at school," she said. "It is realistic to say that the gap in educational achievement starts from the very moment a child is born."
The way to surmount these obstacles is training teachers to be "good early-childhood educators" who can help bridge the achievement gap by "providing children from at-risk environments with social and academic experiences that correlate with school success," Marshall said.
"Preschool is not simply about enrollment -- the particulars make all the difference," she said. "Good preschools can rewrite the scripts of children's lives."
The Family Connection promotes the need for early-childhood education by providing programs, tools and other resources necessary to train parents and teachers. TFC has also become a regular meeting space for many community organizations and groups, ranging from local Head Start teachers to the Law Enforcement Planning Commission, Baecher-Brown said.
Rounding out Tuesday's celebrations, CFVI Board Chairman Ricardo Charaf offered an emotional thank you to all of the donors who made building the center possible.
"This is exciting -- it's unbelievable what's happening tonight," he said. "You can really see how much we've achieved in a year. We are working hard, and I'll let you know that this is just about the best investment you can make, because every dollar invested in our kids will really help us succeed later on in life."
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.