Early Learning
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From Sesame Street to Transmediaville: The Future of Ready to Learn

From its beginnings, the Ready to Learn (RTL) Program in the Office of Innovation and Improvement has both served America's youngest learners and been a learner itself – of the fast-evolving world of digital communications technology that, in 1995, consisted of television and a nascent World Wide Web. In fact, when initially author

Celebrating Great Schools in the New Year

Dr. Melendez greets a student speaker at the Mahalia Jackson Early Childhood and Family Learning Center.

Dr. Melendez speaks to a young student at the Mahalia Jackson Early Childhood and Family Learning Center (ECFLC).  Read more about Dr. Melendez' visit to the ECFLC in the Times-Picayune.

I went on my first work trip of 2011 to the wonderful city of New Orleans last week. On Friday the 14th, I spent some time at an early learning school: the Mahalia Jackson Early Childhood and Family Learning Center (ECFLC). Not only did I get to do a tour of the school, but I also was able to spend some time with the Louisiana State Literacy Team, as they were doing a visit of the Center and holding their meeting at the school that same day. Walking around the Center and meeting with its staff and students provided all of us visitors an opportunity to think about what a comprehensive literacy plan starting at birth could —and should – look like. I left the school energized and inspired, and I hope the State Literacy Team felt the same way.

I also visited the Warren Easton High School, which has such a great history behind it as the state’s oldest public high school. The school reopened as a charter school after Hurricane Katrina, but still faced tremendous trials and struggles. The staff members, in conjunction with support from the community, are working hard to rebuild and reform the school to ensure that all its students are on track for academic success.

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Early Learning Resources

The Special Education National Activities—Parent Information Centers
Is designed to ensure that parents of children with disabilities receive training and information to help them improve educational outcomes for their children.

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Federal Technical Assistance for Early Learning

Federally Funded Early Childhood Technical Assistance Projects
Technical assistance resources from the Department of Health and Human Services.

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Early Learning Initiative

President Obama is committed to providing the support that our youngest children need to succeed later in school. The importance of the early years in a child's life has been well documented. The Department of Education (ED) prioritizes improving the health, social, emotional, and educational outcomes for young children from birth through 3rd grade by:

  1. enhancing the quality of early learning programs, and
  2. increasing the access to high quality early learning programs especially for young children at risk for school failure.
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