America’s revolution didn’t end on July 4, 1776. On that day, the first phase of nation building began. More than 200 years later, we are still building; and, in many ways, that’s exactly what PCCY is all about. To build this nation we must ensure that the next generation is ready to inherit the reigns and protect our democracy.
It sounds simplistic, but pre-K is one of our most invaluable nation-building strategies. It has proven, against many odds, to open the door to a lifetime of education and personal success; two cornerstones of a healthy democratic society. Now is time to take strategy to scale.
The good news is we have built legions of support for the cause of pre-k. We’ve garnered tens of millions in new investments for pre-K from the Commonwealth and led the successful charge for Philadelphia –where the Declaration of Independence was signed – to hit another historic marker as the first major city to ensure pre-k access for nearly every child.
We’ve not done this alone. Advocates and partner organizations were essential to this battle plan. So too have courageous private sector partners. Top among the ranks is the partner we honor this year, PNC Bank.
The PNC Grow Up Great Initiative has outfitted early learning programs and parents with a staggering $350 million in books, supplies and funding all aimed at preparing our youngest learners for success. For every dollar spent on high quality early education, PNC explains, society gains as much as $13 in long-term savings.
That’s why PCCY’s Public Citizen of the Year is PNC Senior VP of Client and Community Relations Jean Canfield, recognizing her and PNC’s visionary commitment to improving the quality of life for children in our region.
On April 19th, luminaries will open the door to another priceless museum displaying the history and spirit that created our nation.
But on May 16 the Mayor will be on hand to remind us all what it takes to keep our revolution alive–we must make the critical investments in the next generation. From pre-K, to schools, to college and beyond, the American revolution depends on the next generation having the confidence, foresight, instincts, and smarts to successfully ensure our democracy can flourish.
Philadelphia DHS ends ‘child support’ billing for incarcerated youth. “It’s important that we’re not balancing our budget on the backs of children and families that come from neighborhoods in poverty.” City Councilman Kenyatta Johnson.