Browse all articles

Kicking Off the Right Start Town Halls

Common Sense Kids Action is hosting a series of Right Start town halls as an opportunity for parents, educators, and advocates to share their ideas on how we can make kids California's top priority.

Common Sense Kids Action launched its Right Start Commission town hall series with a Sacramento, Calif,. event co-hosted by California State Senator Richard Pan on June 16.

Commissioner U.S. Representative George Miller (retired) and Build Healthy Communities Director Kim Williams joined me, the Right Start Commission's staff director, on the panel for the first town hall since the release of Rebuilding the California Dream, the Commission's landmark report about the state of early childhood in the Golden State.

As the report notes, California's children suffer the second-worst living standard in the nation, and nearly 1 million children age 5 and younger do not have access to subsidized child care or preschool. Since 90 percent of brain development happens before the age of 5, we urgently need to change this harmful status quo.

We've designed the Right Start town halls to raise awareness of the commission's call for a transformation to a child-centered early childhood system. The most important feature of these events is the opportunity for local parents, early childhood service providers, and community members to share their stories about the problems and obstacles they face.

At the Sacramento event we heard about the lack of services available and how hard it is for parents and families to access them. We engaged in a conversation about why a child-centered system's focus on what's best for children and families will lead to our asking different questions and achieving better outcomes for our kids.

We are planning more events with community groups and legislators statewide.

Join Common Sense Kids Action to keep posted about future town halls and our efforts to ensure every child has the opportunity to thrive.

Kids Action