Strong Families & Early Learning

The Strong Families & Early Learning Program Area supports families with young children through policy research, development and advocacy; public education and action campaigns that support positive parent engagement; and coalition work. Research shows that the earliest years of life are critical to a child's long-term success, but dramatic changes to the workforce have left families facing more stress and demands on their time than ever before. We give parents and communities tools to foster early brain and language development, and advance policies focused on nurturing environments, high quality child care, early learning, and supportive workplace practices.  Our current work is focused in two areas:

Too Small To Fail

Too Small to Fail, a joint initiative of The Opportunity Institute and the Clinton Foundation, supports parents and caregivers, communities, and businesses with innovative solutions to improve the health and well-being of children ages zero to five, so that all children have a chance to succeed in the 21st century.

We help parents, businesses and communities identify specific actions, consistent with the new research, that they can take to improve the lives of young children. Through our “Talking is Teaching: Talk, Read, Sing” campaign, we work with communities to meet families where they are - in grocery stores, laundromats, health clinics, churches - to empower them to turn everyday moments into learning opportunities for their children.

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Policy Change that Supports Parents and Families

Crucial to the well-being of young children are work and family policies that support parenting. This Program Area provides research and analysis to give legislators and advocates the tools that they need to support working families  and publicly address the issues that affect them, including increasing access to quality child care, promoting paid family leave, and ensuring predictable working hours for low-wage employees. Beginning as the Children and Families Program at Next Generation, our dedicated research team has written extensively on these topics, and more. Our work is focused on California, but seeks to share lessons learned with the rest of the country.

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