October 2022 Update

Working for a just,
equitable, and quality
early childhood education 
for every young child.
Unity as An Act of Resistance
From DEY Executive Director
Dr. Denisha Jones
Unity as an Act of Resistance

In this new role as the first Executive Director of Defending the Early Years, there is so much I hope to accomplish. Since I became a kindergarten teacher almost 20 years ago, the one thing I felt lacking in my professional identity was a place...

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The DEY Podcast With Kisha Reid EP: 014

"The DEY Podcast with Kisha Reid" is available monthly with fresh interviews!

This month, Kisha Reid interviews Dr. Denisha Jones.

Dr. Jones is the Executive Director of Defending the Early Years. She is a former kindergarten teacher and preschool director who spent the past 19 years in teacher education. Denisha is an education justice advocate and activist working with various grassroots organizations to dismantle the neoliberal assault on public education. She is a part-time faculty member in the Art of Teaching program at Sarah Lawrence College and the School of Education at Howard University. Since 2017, she served on the steering committee for the national Black Lives Matter at School Week of Action. Her first co-edited book, Black Lives Matter at School: An Uprising for Educational Justice, was published in December 2020 by Haymarket Books.
Straight Talk With Children About Racism
By Nancy Carlsson-Paige
Nancy Carlsson-Paige, Author at The Provincetown Independent

Racism is deeply rooted in American institutions and life. Children begin early on to internalize messages about race from TV shows and other screen media, toys, books, what they see [...]

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DEY Advocacy Map
Did you know that ...
  • New Mexico will provide free child care for the majority of its families, starting in fall 2023?

  • A recent survey by the Buffett Institute found that COVID-19 continues to compound Nebraska's child care crisis, including high staff turnover and staff burnout.

  • Illinois passed the "Too Young to Test" bill which prohibits testing of children in pre-kindergarten through second grade?

Find out about these and other early childhood news on the Defending the Early Years Advocacy Map.
Nonprofit Let’s Play America had a successful 14th Annual Play Day on Saturday, September 24, 2022, thanks to the Min-Grant we received from DEY.ORG. The Mini-Grant helped us pay for the fabulous band, Groove Quest,

Over thirty activities were offered at our Play Day. Young children especially liked playing in the dome, which held our Balloon activity.

The Let’s Play America play team is so appreciative of the Mini-Grant provided by DEY.ORG. For those folks interested in planning a Play Day we would like you to know about our Play Day Handbooks that can be ordered on our website, https://www.letsplayamerica.org/handbooks The Handbooks are sent to folks digitally, so you can see videos from past Play Days.
Join us at NAEYC!
Our Leadership
Board of Directors
Nancy Carlsson-Paige
Founder and Senior Advisor

Blakely Bundy
Leadership Board Member

Diane Levin
Founder and Senior Advisor

Geralyn Bywater
Kisha Reid
Director of Communication & Outreach

Executive Director
Denisha Jones

National Advisory Board
Erika Christakis
Sherry Cleary
Bill Crain
Doris Pronin Fromberg 
Michelle Gunderson
Ed Klugman 
Susan Linn
Deborah Meier
Ruth Rodriguez-Fay
James St. Clair
Judith Van Hoorn

Founding National Advisory Board 
Constance Kamii
Lilian Katz
Maurice Sykes
Defending the Early Years, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization.
Donations are tax deductible. Our Tax ID: 82-4308558

Defending the Early Years