What's Next with the Minga Forum on Education

What Is A Minga Forum?

A Minga Forum engages citizens from all sectors to understand the issues and invest time and money in their local community to solve problems, create systemic change, and build stronger local communities.

Why Is It Different? Three reasons --

1. starts with building the case for change (why is this important)

2. pursues system-level change and scales programs that work

3. engages business and community leaders to build support and collaboration

Why Invest in Early Childhood Care and Education?

Over a THIRD of children in our area entering Kindergarten are NOT READY, and HALF of third graders are NOT READING on grade level -- leading indicators of graduation rates, employment, marriage and health outcomes, and even incarceration rates. Children not proficient in reading by third grade are 4 X's LESS LIKELY TO GRADUATE on time.

Solving this problem is not only an urgent social need but an economic imperative. Investing in quality early childhood care and development for all our children yields short-term and long-term returns by improving education results and achievement gaps, reducing social spending, and ultimately building a stronger local workforce, economy, and community.

According to James Heckman, Nobel Laureate in Economics at the University of Chicago, "Quality early learning and development programs for disadvantaged children foster valuable skills, strengthen our workforce, grow our economy, and reduce social spending." Oprah Winfrey has launched a campaign on the importance of focusing on early childhood trauma, saying “Investing in high-quality early childhood programs could avoid the expensive, often inefficient or ineffective interventions required later.” A report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation called "Why Reading in Third Grade Matters" states that "focusing on grade-level reading proficiency at third grade is an essential step toward increasing the number of children from low-income families who succeed academically, graduate from high school on time, and do well in life and the workforce."

What's Next for the Minga Forum on Education?

Over 70 business and community leaders from all sectors turned out for the first Minga Forum on Education workshop where we all learned more about the issues in early childhood care and education in our community and envisioned a better future.

Solving this problem in our community requires the collective efforts and resources of leaders from all sectors. At the next Minga Forum on Education workshop, we will be building a common understanding of the current system of early childhood care and education and drafting a new system that scales what works and closes the gaps. Please mark your calendars for the second Minga Forum on Education workshop on October 11th from 11 AM to 2 PM. Details about the workshop will follow soon.

We are looking for business and community leaders to take a seat at the table, roll up their sleeves, and make a real difference! Hope to see you in October.


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