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National Forum 2006 Program — Early Learning Sessions

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Wednesday, July 12, 2006

10:00 AM -- 12:00 PM
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Accountability for Pre-K Programs: Building Models to Support Investments (session #330)
Atrium 7, 2nd Floor
Over the past two years, states have increased funding for preschool by over half a billion dollars. In 2006, 12 governors endorsed the creation or expansion of pre-kindergarten programming. Now many states are faced with the dilemma of how to answer questions of accountability. This session will address the issue of linking outcome standards with assessment of program performance in implementing pre-K programming.


Tony Bennett, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Indiana Department of Education, Indiana

Holly Franks Boffy, 2010 Louisiana State Teacher of the Year, Paul Breaux Middle School, Louisiana

Jonathan Plucker, Director and Professor, Center for Evaluation and Education Policy, Indiana University, Indiana

Paul Reville, Secretary of Education, Executive Office of Education, Massachusetts

Philip Schmidt, Associate Provost, Western Governors University, Utah

2:00 PM -- 3:30 PM
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The Economic Case for Investing in Early Childhood Education: Implications for Policy (session #348)
Atrium 4, 2nd Floor
Quality early childhood programs cost money. With the unprecedented expansion of pre-K programs across the states comes rising concerns about how best to provide support. Financing early care and education is a high priority in most states today. The presenters of this session will discuss the long-term economic benefits of early education, present the supporting evidence and discuss strategies for financing state-supported pre-kindergarten programs.

4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM
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Roundtable 1 Finance 101: The Basics of School Finance (session #356)
Garden Court, 1st Floor
From property taxes to state funding formulas, this roundtable will discuss the nuts and bolts of school finance and provide participants access to the experts. This session will be valuable to those new to state education finance and will provide a look at the latest issues and innovations in school funding.

John L. Myers, partner, Augenblick, Palaich and Associates, Inc.

4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM
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Roundtable 10 Full-Day Kindergarten What's Happening Now? (session #365)
Garden Court, 1st Floor
One year after the release of the ECS report, Full-day Kindergarten: A Study of State Policies in the United States, many states and districts continue to grapple with the challenges of offering full-day kindergarten. Come hear the latest research on the impact of full-day kindergarten and its efficacy as a strategy to close the achievement gap, and learn about what states are doing to implement or expand full-day kindergarten programming.

Mimi Howard, Early Learning program director, Education Commission of the States
Becky Hill, education policy advisor, Office of the Governor, Arizona

4:00 PM -- 5:00 PM
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Roundtable 21 Universal Pre-K The Illinois Experience (session #376)
Garden Court, 1st Floor
More and more states are considering the benefits of pre-kindergarten for all children. Known as universal pre-K (UPK), this voluntary program has primarily been available to 4-year-olds. This year, with strong support from Governor Rod Blagoivich, Illinois passed landmark legislation making pre-K available to all 3- and 4-year-olds in the state. Please join two veterans of this effort to hear about the program's development and operation as well as the political process that helped make the program a reality.

Brenda Holmes, member, Illinois State Board of Education; ECS Commissioner; member ECS Steering Committee
Kay Henderson, division administrator of early childhood education, Illinois State Board of Education

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