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Each of us has a story.

It’s time to tell yours.

Your story matters. Your story has power. It can help families make early learning choices for their children. It can help leaders recognize that quality early learning makes a difference in their communities and they need to support it.

Share your story online

You can complete the web form below or download the Tell Your Story form as a Word document and send it to us. You may upload a photo only if you have permissions to share and publish the photo.  After your story is reviewed and published, you will receive an email that the story is live on the website. Make sure to share the link with friends, family as well as your legislators and school leaders. You can also post the link to your Facebook page!

Please note that by submitting your story, you are agreeing that you have the authority to provide the story and grant Berks County Intermediate Unit, the parent organization of Pennsylvania’s Promise for Children, its legal representatives and assigns, and those acting with its authority and permission, such as the Office of Child Development and Early Learning and Pattan, the absolute right and permission to copyright, use, reuse, publish, and republish, photographic portraits, pictures, or videos to be published on websites and printed materials. We reserve the right to make editorial and formatting changes to your story. If you would like your name and/or organization to be kept confidential, please write that in your story and it will be removed. You will receive an e-mail as soon as your story is published.

Download the Tell Your Story form (Word)

    I want to share my story with community leaders- please share my story and contact information with Early Learning PA. Early Learning PA, www.earlylearningpa.org, is a broad-based coalition that advocates access to voluntary, high-quality early learning opportunities for all Pennsylvania children. It can help you share your story with leaders like the Governor and state legislators.
  • By submitting your story, you hereby grant Berks County Intermediate Unit, the parent organization of Pennsylvania’s Promise for Children, its legal representatives and assigns, and those acting with its authority and permission, such as the Office of Child Development and Early Learning and Pattan, the absolute right and permission to copyright, use, reuse, publish, and republish, photographic portraits, pictures, or videos without restriction as to changes or alterations, or reproductions thereof in color or otherwise made through any media for art, advertising, trade, or any other purpose whatsoever. I also consent to the use of any printed matter in conjunction therewith.

Tips for telling your story

When you are out in the community or writing to a legislator, your story can make a difference. You don’t have to be able to quote statistics; you need to share your own experiences and support of Pennsylvania’s investment in quality early education.

In your story, share in your own words:

  • The early childhood programs you are involved with, as a parent or teacher, etc.
  • How these programs help you, your child, or others in your community
  • Why these programs are important to you
  • What would happen if you or others in your community lost access to these programs
  • Share children’s successes throughout the year.

If you are a family member:

  • Name all the early childhood programs that you participate in. It is important that our lawmakers and community leaders realize that each of these programs fills an important role for families and work well together. For example, if your child attends a PA Pre-K Counts classroom in a child care center that is a Keystone STAR 2, mention both programs. It helps legislators understand that we need early childhood programs that can work together.
  • Tell how your family benefits from the early education program. For example, are you better able to provide for your family because you receive Child Care Works subsidy or because you know your child is in a quality early education program? Have you become more involved in your child’s early learning and development? Have you seen your child learn new skills? Become more excited about school? Make new friends? Have his/her teachers mentioned the good things your child has done?  If you have children who did participate in an early education program a few years ago, are they doing well in school now?
  • Are there other families that you know that would like to have access to an early education program but can’t because there isn’t enough space or funding for them?

Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • How do you support your child’s early learning at home? How do you help them grow and develop?
  • How has Child Care Works (CCIS) helped you work or go to school and/or choose a child care/ early learning program?
  • What do you love about your child’s teacher?
  • How has your child care/ early learning program helped your child overcome any delays?
  • How has your child progressed because of quality early learning? What can your child do now?

If you are a teacher or early education program:

  • Name the early education programs that are included in the organization that you work. (see the list above). It is important that our lawmakers and decision makers realize that each of these programs fills an important role for families and work well together. For example, if your program is a Keystone STAR 2 facility that is also participating in Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts, mention both programs. It helps legislators understand that we need early childhood programs that can work together.
  • Tell how you’ve seen children and families benefit from early education programs. For example, are children building important pre-academic and social skills that are getting them ready for school? Have you seen children enter below their age level in development and make great improvement so they are on track by the time they enter kindergarten? Have parents become more interested in their child’s learning with your help and support? Have you seen families become stronger because of this support?
  • Are there other families that you know that would like to have access to an early education program but can’t because there isn’t enough funding?

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Ideas for kindergarten teachers:

  • How do you believe quality early learning prepares children for kindergarten?
  • How prepared are children who have participated in quality early learning programs when they enter kindergarten?
  • How do you connect with early learning programs in your community to help make a smoother transition to kindergarten for children in your community?
  • How do children who received quality early learning do throughout kindergarten?
  • Early Learning Programs
  • Why does quality early learning matter to you?
  • Why do teachers matter?
  • Why participate in Keystone STARS? What has Keystone STARS done for you and the children in your program?

If you are a businessperson:

  • Share your reasons why you believe that quality early education is an important investment for Pennsylvania. What fact really motivated you to tell your story?
  • Share the importance of a skilled workforce to your business, and if you have difficulty recruiting employees that are ready for the job (not requiring additional training) please share those difficulties. It is important for our decisionmakers to recognize that quality early education has a positive effect on both K-12 education and career readiness.
  • Share what benefits you see for your employees that have access to quality early education for their children. Are they happier? More productive? Have less absences?
  • Share ways in which your business is investing in quality early education. Does your business provide donations or in-kind services to local early learning programs? Does your business house an early learning program on site? Or provide subsidies to employees that need child care?
  • Share examples of others that you know that benefit from OCDEL programs. How have the children and their parents benefited from having access to quality early education?

For everyone!

  • Share your reasons why you believe that quality early education is an important investment for Pennsylvania. What fact really motivated you to tell your story?
  • Share examples of others that you know that benefit from quality early education programs. How have the children and their parents benefited from having access to quality early education?

 

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