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Achievement Gap Committee
Early Childhood Education Forums

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Governor Dayton has proposed new funding for early child care and education in his budget.  To inform the public, the Achievement Gap Committee organized forums to highlight current research and practice around early care and education, particularly as it relates to closing the achievement gap.  Use the links below to watch the videos of these forums.


Forum 1: Exploring “Quality” Care: What does quality look like, is it the same across cultures, and do state investments in quality have a long-term benefit or fade out with time?

teacher with children
Rob Grunewald, associate economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Minneapolis, Focusing on “fade out”: Do early childhood investments have long-term benefits, and if so, how?

Kathryn Tout, co-director, early childhood research, Child Trends: What have we learned
about quality early care from MN research and pilot programs, and how do we take quality to scale?

Betty Emarita, founder/president, Development and Training Resources: Does quality early care look the same across cultures, and what do we know about cultural best practices?

See John Risken's Video for the first forum

Forum 2: What is Minnesota’s plan for increasing access to quality early childhood education, and how is it working in communities of color?

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Karen Cadigan, Director of the Office of Early Learning: How does Parent Aware improve early education programs’ quality, family support, K-12 alignment, and accountability?

Bao Vang, Community Outreach and Quality Coach with Think Small: Is Parent Aware meeting the needs of new immigrant families and those who are English Language Learners?

Barb Fabre, Director of Child Care and Early Childhood Programs, White Earth Reservation: Does Parent Aware work for Native American families?

See the article about the second forum:  "Early childhood education:  What does culture have to do with it?"


See the video:  MN's Plan for Increasing Access to Early Childhood Education



For background on the huge benefits of quality early childhood education for the public, families, and the lifelong development of the children who receive it, see the 30 minute Real Progress TV interview with Art Rolnick, U of M Humphrey School Fellow and former Federal Reserve Economist.

The Achievement Gap Committee sponsors monthly forums with experts on education and ways to close the achievement gap.  It was started six years ago by former Mayor of Minneapolis and U.S. Congressman Don Fraser in response to Minnesota's having one of the highest achievement gaps in the U.S.  The
Convenors are Don Fraser and Grant Abbott







MN's Leading Election System

With Secretary of State Steve Simon


steve simon


Listen to Secretary of State Steve Simon's excellent presentation on MN's outstanding election system emulated by many other states at the Think Again Brooklyns forum January 19, 2016.  Secretary Simon includes ways in which it can be improved, and he explains why it is important to vote.  He concludes with a quote from a tee shirt:  "Failure to vote is not an act of rebellion.  It is an act of surrender."

Get details on how to vote at http://mnvotes.org

How Oregon Became the Easiest Place to Vote in the US

By Lornet Turnbull
YES! Magazine
October 8, 2016


In January, Oregon became the first state in the country to begin automatically registering eligible citizens to vote when they obtain or renew their driver's licenses or state IDs, completely shifting the burden of voter registration from the individual to the government. 

Read the Article

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