MINNEAPOLIS—Today MinnCAN: The Minnesota Campaign for Achievement Now released ‘Starting Strong: Pre-K through 3rd Grade Success Stories from Across Minnesota,’ a new report sharing best practices from six communities working to improve early learning opportunities for all children.
With support from The McKnight Foundation, a longtime advocate for PreK-3rd grade alignment, MinnCAN toured the state in spring 2014, meeting with dozens of classroom teachers, school leaders, community partners and childcare providers in Deer River, Winona, Proctor, St. Paul, Brooklyn Center and Pelican Rapids. The ‘Starting Strong’ report shares these communities’ success stories in increasing PreK-3rd grade student achievement, teacher collaboration and parent engagement, and offers recommendations—both for practitioners and policymakers—to further align resources, professional development, curriculum and standards.
“Research consistently shows that high-quality, well-aligned early learning opportunities can help kids succeed in school and in life. Minnesota has recently made great strides to increase such opportunities for children, from early learning scholarships to all-day kindergarten,” said Daniel Sellers, MinnCAN executive director. “We visited communities spearheading innovative efforts across Minnesota, where we saw clearly that the next step for Minnesota’s early learning educators and advocates is alignment. Through laser-focused teacher collaboration across grade levels, intentional instruction and pioneering parent engagement strategies, we can ensure all Minnesota kids can read by the end of third grade and are set up for success in later years.”
“Funders, educators, parents and policymakers can all learn powerful lessons from the PreK-3rd alignment efforts under way across Minnesota,” said Kate Wolford, president of The McKnight Foundation. “'Starting Strong' documents the powerful impact of promoting quality and consistency across the PreK-3rd continuum, and provides insights to help policymakers and practitioners replicate these isolated achievements.”
For more information on MinnCAN, or for interviews with Daniel Sellers, Kate Wolford or educators featured in the report, contact Ariana Kiener: 612-666-3066 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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About MinnCAN: Launched in 2011, MinnCAN: The Minnesota Campaign for Achievement Now is an education advocacy nonprofit. MinnCAN is a movement of nearly 12,000 Minnesotans–and growing–dedicated to creating the political will to enact smart public policies to ensure that every Minnesota child has access to a great public school. Learn more at www.minncan.org.