Advancing Equity in Pre-K Access and Enrollment in Chicago: A Conversation with Researchers, Policymakers and Parent Leaders

Council of Large Public Housing Authorities
Washington, District of Columbia
Tuesday, October 27, 2020 12:00 pm to 1:30 pm

Please join us for a dynamic conversation about how findings from a new research study can inform policy and drive equity in pre-K access and enrollment. We know that equitable access to high-quality early learning experiences is one of the best ways to level the playing field so that every child can thrive in school and life. The research conducted by co-authors Start Early (formerly the Ounce of Prevention Fund), NORC at the University of Chicago and the University of Chicago Consortium on School Research helps illuminate a path forward for designing equitable pre-K policies and systems for our youngest learners.

Researchers Dr. Stacy Ehrlich (NORC) and Dr. Maia Connors (Start Early) will present results from this new study of Chicago’s school-based pre-K system, conducted with Dr. Amanda Stein (Start Early) and Dr. John Easton (UChicago Consortium). Findings show that increasing access to full-day pre-K programs may be an effective policy strategy for increasing enrollment among high-priority student groups and making educational opportunities more equitable. 

A panel of Chicago policymakers, parent leaders, and national experts will continue the conversation, reflecting on these findings, situating them in the current early childhood education context, and discussing the implications for advancing equity in pre-K access and enrollment. Joining moderator Dr. John Easton are panelists: 

  • Bryan Stokes, Chief of Early Childhood Education, Chicago Public Schools 
  • Samantha Aigner-Treworgy, Commissioner of the Massachusetts Dept. of Early Education and Care; former Chief of Early Learning for the City of Chicago
  • Dr. Maurice Swinney, Chief Equity Officer, Chicago Public Schools 
  • Rosazlia Grillier, COFI (Community Organizing and Family Issues) POWER-PAC Parent Member  

Dr. Iheoma Iruka, University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, will deliver closing remarks, offering a national perspective on the implications of this research and the value of the integration of research and policy efforts for school districts and early education systems across the country.

Start Early
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