January 31, 2020
In this issue:

  • Announcing our New Policy Director: RuthAnne Oakey-Frost, J.D.
  • Louisiana Dept. of Education awarded $33 million for Early Care and Education
  • As Legislators Prepare To Go To War, Here's Something You Can Support
  • Early Childhood Education Gaining Steam Politically "Like Apple Pie and the Fourth of July"
  • New Policy Brief Released by the Ounce of Prevention Fund
  • Upcoming Dates

Announcing our New Policy Director:
RuthAnne Oakey-Frost, J.D.
We are thrilled to welcome RuthAnne Oakey-Frost, J.D., to our team as the Policy Director for the Louisiana Policy Institute for Children.
RuthAnne Oakey-Frost graduated with honors from the S.J. Quinney College of Law where she worked on the Family Law Journal, was a member of the Jessup International Moot Court team, and received a Quinney Fellowship to do research. Before she joined Utah's Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel as an Associate Attorney (where she worked in the legislature for eight general sessions), she worked at the law firm of Steptoe and Johnson . Most recently she served as the Director of Licensing and Compliance for the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control . RuthAnne received her bachelor's degree from the University of Utah in political science.
Louisiana Dept. of Education awarded $33 million
for Early Care and Education
The Louisiana Department of Education just received a federal Preschool Development Grant for $33 million for early care and education. $11 million will be invested into expanding seats for early care and education seats.
"This exciting news should serve as momentum for early childhood providers, advocates and lawmakers to continue their progress," said Sonnier-Netto, also in a statement."

- Libbie Sonnier-Netto, Executive Director of the Louisiana Policy Institute for
Children
As Legislators Prepare To Go To War,
Here's Something Can Support
"If 2019 was the year teachers finally got a modest pay raise after a decade of waiting, 2020 could well be the year the Legislature tackles funding for early childhood education.

Unlike tort reform, there aren’t opponents in this case. Just about everyone in state politics these days will say that they understand the importance of investing in education and care for Louisiana’s youngest and most vulnerable, and that they get that many kids who start out behind in school never catch up. For that, credit a broad and committed coalition of community and business groups who’ve spent the past several years methodically educating politicians and amassing support."

- Stephanie Grace from The Advocate
Early Childhood Education Gaining Steam Politically
"Like Apple Pie and the Fourth of July"
Business groups in Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Lafayette, Lake Charles and Shreveport are extolling the virtues of how early childhood education is also a workforce issue.

Lots of Republicans and Democrats alike agree that steps are needed to tackle a huge problem linked to early education: only about half of children enter kindergarten in Louisiana ready to learn."

- Will Sentel from The Advocate
New Policy Brief Released by The Ounce of Prevention Fund
The Ounce of Prevention Fund , (The Ounce) one of our national partners specializing in providing access to high-quality early care and education, recently released a policy brief, Expanding High-Quality Child Care for Infants & Toddlers: Lessons from Implementation of Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships in States.

In 2019, The Ounce conducted interviews with leaders in seven states, including Louisiana, to learn more about the impacts of the Partnerships on state child care policies and systems. Read more about their findings and key recommendations for Louisiana.
Upcoming Dates
Upcoming Dates

  • February 14 Early Childhood Care and Education Commission Advisory Board
  • March 10-11 Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) Meeting
  • March 17 Children's Cabinet (CCAB) Advisory Board
About Us
The Louisiana Policy Institute for Children (LPIC)
is a 501(c)(3) nonpartisan, nonprofit organization
that is a source of data, research and information
for policymakers on issues concerning young
children in Louisiana.   

For more information, contact Libbie Sonnier-Netto
at lsonniernetto@policyinstitutela.org.
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