Early Childhood Care and Education Commission Releases Its Report for Improving Early Education in Louisiana
At its January 29 meeting, the Early Childhood Care and Education Commission unanimously approved recommendations for improving early care and education in Louisiana. The Commission’s report, Funding Our Future: LA B to 3, will now go to the governor, the state legislature, and the state board of education as mandated by law. 

The full Commission Report can be found here

The Commission found that the challenges are significant:
  • Many young children in need: There are 173,000 children in need birth to age three in Louisiana.
  • Many working families: Two out of three children age five and under have both parents or their single parent working.
  • Few quality early care and education options available to families: Fewer than 7% of in need children birth through age two and less than 33% of three year olds can access publicly funded early care and education. 

The Commission recommends that Louisiana build on the state’s success with LA 4:
  • Louisiana created LA 4 in 2001, built it over time, and today over 90% of 4 year olds in need can access a quality early care and education program.

The Commission recommends that to find success like LA 4 for birth to age three:
  • A state investment of $85.8 million
  • And an increase of nearly that amount annually over the next decade through combined local, state, federal and private funds. 
  • These funds will:
  • Expand quality seats to serve 114,000 children in need, prioritizing birth to age three, an increase from only 22,000 served today in that age range.
  • Strengthen resources for all families, regardless of need, that support nurturing relationships with young children.  
 
The Commission deferred a number of issues to its second year. In 2019 the Commission will study: 
  • Local Governance Structures for early care and education.
  • Promising Practices in evidence-based programs for healthy child development, especially for infants and toddlers.
  • Promising practices, such as shared services, to ensure that early care and education providers stay in business.
  • Opportunities for greater collaboration between stakeholder groups, state agencies, business and industry, workforce development, and local governments to meet the funding needs of LA B to 3. 

Act 639 of the 2018 Legislative Session established the Commission to make recommendations for a Master Plan for Early Care and Education for Louisiana. For more information on the Commission and its report view the Louisiana Department of Education’s PowerPoint presentation or the articles below.

ECCE Advisory Council Will Meet Wednesday, February 13, at 1:00 pm
The next Early Childhood Care and Education Advisory Council meeting will take place on Wednesday, February 13, at 1:00 pm in the Thomas Jefferson Room (Rm. 1-136) of the Claiborne Building, 1201 N. 3rd Street, Baton Rouge. 

The agenda for the February 13 meeting includes:
  • Consideration of an update on Louisiana’s emergency preparedness for early learning centers
  • Consideration of proposed revisions to Bulletin 139, Louisiana Child Care and Development Funds Programs
  • Discussion of the ECCE Advisory Council 2018 Annual Report and Quarter 4 Report 

Council meetings are open to the public. They can also be live-streamed here.
The Louisiana Policy Institute for Children (LPIC) advances policies to ensure that Louisiana's young children are ready for success in school and in life. We are a source of nonpartisan, independent information on issues concerning children ages birth through four in Louisiana. We also develop policy proposals informed by data, research, best practices and the experiences of other states for improving the outcomes of Louisiana’s young children, and then provide educational and outreach activities around these recommended policy solutions.

To learn how to support LPIC, click here . For the latest news and updates on early care and education, visit our website or follow us on Facebook and Twitter. For more information, contact Melanie Bronfin, mmbronfin@policyinstitutela.org.