Join us Wednesday, January 27 in Tumwater for a screening of Raising of America- Register NOW
KBTC Public Television, the Department of Early Learning (DEL) and Visions of Early Learning are happy to announce the screening and discussion panel of " The Raising of America " in Tumwater on Wednesday, January 27 2016 at ESD 113 (6005 Tyee Dr. SW. Thurston Room Tumwater, WA 98512).

This event is free and open to the public. Those interested in attending should register here: Thurston Raising of America Screening.
Following the screening, a panel discussion with state and local leaders in early learning and health will take place.
Panelists include:
  • Ross Hunter, Director of Washington State Department of Early Learning
  • John Wiesman, Secretary of Health, Washington State Department of Health
  • Jon Tunheim, Thurston County Prosecuting Attorney
  • Gretchen Thaller, MSN, RN., Coordinator Maternal Child Health/Supervisor Nurse Family Partnership- Thurston County Public Health and Social Services
Panelists will take questions from the public and offer expertise on the state of early learning and family-strengthening initiatives in Washington and in Thurston County.

Professional Development
Visions for Early Learning Professional Development Lending Library
Partner agencies now have access to Vision's lending library of high quality training materials for Home Visitors and other early learning professionals from Zero to Three, as well as continued access to Dr. Donna's Beegle's See Poverty, Be the Difference DVD and guidebook, 

Train with us!
VEL's Regional Home Visiting Cohor
continues it's commitment to professional development and community of practice building in 2016 with a new quarterly series of free one-day trainings for home visiting professionals.
Tentative Training dates are:
Feb 26, May 23, and mid-November.
VEL's first annual Home Visiting/Leadership Summer Institute is scheduled for July 22, 2016.
Advancing Racial Equity
Are we failing our region's children of color? Accept this call to action and join our conversation at VEL's first annual Advancing Racial Equity Community Engagement Summit on May 3rd, 2016, and deepen your knowledge during our  
2016 Advancing Racial Equity workshop series,
July 13 and August 18th.
VEL is excited to be able to offer Advancing Racial Equity Action Plan Mini-grants to graduates of the Advancing Racial Equity series. Contact Project Coordinator Jane Partridge to become more involved in our region's work around race. 

Click here to see the flyer for our 2016 summer Equity series, registration to open by March, 2016. And watch for updates on our May 3rd Summit!
Opportunities for early learning professionals, families and care givers to m ake a difference 
Seeking Advocates for Early Learning!
Early Learning Regional Coalitions 
Advocacy Day, Reception and 
Statewide Meeting
Olympia, WA
February 18 & 19, 2016 
See Poverty...Be the Difference Conference
United Way of Lewis County, in partnership with St. John's Lutheran Church, Centralia First United Methodist Church,  WSECU and Security State Bank, are hosting a "See Poverty...Be the Difference" conference with professional Dr. Donna Beegle.
Saturday, March 19, 2016 
9:00 am - 3:00 pm
St. John's Lutheran Church
2190 Jackson Hwy, Chehalis WA 98532

$20 to attend (includes lunch) 


Participate in Standards Alignment Community Input 
 Monday, April 18, 
6:30 - 8:30 p.m. 
at ESD 113 in Tumwater 

With the passage of the Early Start Act on July 6, 2015, the Washington State Department of Early Learning (DEL) has begun work to align childcare licensing and ECEAP (state-funded pre-school) standards within Early Achievers (the state's Quality Rating and Improvement System), quality framework. 

DEL in collaboration with Thrive Washington, Early Learning Regional Coalitions and Child Care Aware has organized the Standards Alignment Community Input process, with continued opportunities for Regional input on
 Monday, April 18, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. at ESD 113 in Tumwater 

"High-quality early learning is a targeted investment with proven outcomes for kids in school and in life. Yet too many families can't afford it. Working Connections Child Care bridges the gap between the high costs of care and tight family budgets. But unless lawmakers act, thousands of kids and parents will be stuck on a waiting list for Working Connections.

Check this out!
VEL produces animated video:
Hank and Harriet Play a Game 
Imagine children waiting in a local dentist's office watching our Hank and Harriet video and the waiting children learning academic vocabulary that will help them show their teachers what they already know! That vision, as well as the potential of childcare providers and teachers sharing Hank and Harriet with children and families, was the motivating force behind VEL's animated video on Academic Vocabulary.

DVDs and Wafer Drives loaded with the video as well as other great resources for families and caregivers are available for regional distribution and individual use! Please email for more information.


Participate in a quick 11 question, multiple choice survey to share with us your thoughts on our Hank and Harriet video as well as any other VEL Family Engagement Activity you may have participated in. VEL is committed to creating user-friendly feedback loops between families/caregivers and our local and regional coalitions...and to using that input when creating and funding new opportunities for families and caregivers. Contact for our survey translated into other languages.

Distribution of this document is intended to share strategies to increase the readiness level of early math skills for children entering kindergarten and to help distribute resources to parents/families such as the Early Math Brochure and to licensed early learning providers, such as the Learning Pathways in Numeracy: Addressing Early Numeracy Skills.
Click on the printable documents and links below:  

VEL Funding for Local Family/Caregiver Engagement
VEL will continue to be responsive and supportive to local need by continuing funding to support ongoing or evolving Family/Caregiver engagement projects from our region's five local early learning coalitions and their partners. Standards for funded projects include utilizing Essential Racial Equity Questions developed by Washington State's Early Learning Advisory Council and incorporating feedback gained from the to be developed Family Engagement exit survey. VEL's Community Events and Opportunities for Families page is updated as events are scheduled.

BE INVOLVED, Make a Difference
VEL Board Representatives and Visions Work Team members make a difference. Consider becoming a driving force within and behind VEL's work within our region, increasing engagement with families, addressing equity issues of race and poverty, increasing access to services, and providing supports to early learning professionals who directly impact our region's youngest learners and families. Talk to your local coalition chair or VEL Executive Committee Representative for more information on upcoming bi-monthly meetings.

Partner agencies are invited to submit PDF's of local events and employment opportunities that may be of interest to coalition members to Project Coordinator Jane Partridge at for consideration for future publication in the monthly VEL newsletter.