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Are we ready for the Eagles Generation?

Oh baby, have we suffered. There were a few near misses and many off-by-a-mile seasons, and now the Eagles are world champs. The deep freeze is over.

It warms the heart…and in nine months, we’ll likely see that it warmed hearths as well.   

After a long, punishing winter, Philadelphia may see a mini-baby boom of tiny fans for whom the Birds being Super Bowl Champions is the norm. But will the city be ready for them?

PCCY is gearing up for the Eagles’ Generation.

We know the early years are the critical years for healthy brain development and what a child is exposed to could have a profound effect on their entire lives. That’s why PCCY has led the charge for twenty years to make quality pre-K a high priority for lawmakers in Pennsylvania.

While quality pre-K can do a lot of amazing and important things, it can’t reverse time. So what about the years before pre-K?

In the first four years of life, a child in a professional family will have heard 45 million words while a child in a working class family hears 26 million. But children living in poverty will accumulate just 13 million. The ‘word gap’ predicts the struggle poor kids experience through fourth grade, according to a landmark study.

In our Philadelphia Left Out report, we showed the child poverty rate was nearly 40% (that’s around 130,000 children) with no indication of that number improving.

According to the state, 14,000 children under 3 attend child care in Philadelphia and only half of them are in Keystone STARS accredited infant/toddler programs. This means that of the total 62,000 children under three in Philly, we know nothing of the child care status for 48,000 of them.

That’s a costly blind spot.

What we do know is there isn’t enough capacity for child care, there’s certainly not enough quality options, and the median cost of care for an infant in Philly is crushingly high—approaching $12,000. That puts child care beyond the reach of most families who can’t access public subsidies. (And that’s just for families with ONE child!)

That there aren’t enough quality slots and that there’s little access for poor kids that need quality child care most shows that neither legislators nor the public that voted for them has paid attention to these critical years. Twenty years ago, the same could have been said about pre-K. But look at us now.

It’s now time to focus on quality child care for infants and toddlers.

By the fall, PCCY’s infant/toddler work will include the planning, research, and formation of a new coalition for a powerful advocacy campaign. This coalition of passionate partners will include child care providers, child health care providers, nonprofit and other child-serving organizations, and City officials.

If you’d like to join us, contact Nelida Sepulveda at nelidas@pccy.org, or call 215-563-5848, ext. 18.

As columnist Mike Newell opined this week, Philly isn’t a city on the cusp of doing big things anymore—we’re doing them.

That’s nothing less than what the Eagles Generation deserve. After all, they’re not just future football fans—they’re the franchise.

 

Another Continuing Resolution for Congress and the continuation of a cruel and unjust purgatory for Dreamers. Don’t let legislators forget that you demand they protect America’s children! 

RETWEET

 

“It’s going to not be OK, it’s not….It’s so bad.” Reality TV star Omarosa Manigault, former White House aide, on the prospects of the nation under the current administration, speaking from the set of Celebrity Big Brother.  

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As the Eagles’ buses literally paraded down Broad Street, owner of the 2018 World Champions paused to ‘like’ a tweet for PRE-K!

Help us thank Jeff Lurie by retweeting!   #flyEaglesfly!

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Congress approves CHIP extension until 2027 (that’s another four years!) and funds community health centers in the latest Continuing Resolution, again avoiding a government shutdown.

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