Skip Navigation

FFYF Unveils Plans to Advance Early Learning in 2020 Election

News February 6, 2020

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As the nation’s leading bipartisan advocacy organization working to ensure all children have access to high-quality child care and early education, the First Five Years Fund (FFYF) today unveiled details of its planned work to leverage the 2020 presidential election. Early learning has become a major focal point of candidates and elected officials at all levels of government on both sides of the aisle, with voters increasingly looking to policymakers for solutions to the child care challenges facing working parents. FFYF’s efforts over the next ten months will focus on amplifying the expansive and wide-ranging opportunities for engagement on early learning and child care, which have the potential to withstand the heated presidential contest, build consensus across parties, and ultimately deliver results for America’s children and families.

“Never before has the issue of child care received such broad and consistent public attention in a presidential election,” said First Five Years Fund Executive Director Sarah Rittling. “We have reached an exciting moment of opportunity to make a real and meaningful difference in the lives of countless American families. Years of thoughtful, deliberate, and bipartisan advocacy have helped lead policymakers at every level of government to put forth bold and innovative ideas on behalf of the families they represent. Now, FFYF is ready to help capitalize on the incredible opportunity this election brings to our collective federal advocacy work, and ensure that child care and early learning come through this presidential contest unscathed politically and ready for sweeping progress soon after – regardless of which party holds power in Washington.”

FFYF will soon hold meetings with the top Democratic presidential campaigns and the Trump campaign to share policy research, polling data, tested messaging guidance, and more from the organization’s presidential briefing books.  

In addition, FFYF plans to:

  • Launch a sophisticated digital, print, and broadcast advertising effort to educate crucial voter groups in battleground states;
  • Conduct national polling to add to FFYF’s years of quantitative and qualitative voter survey data;
  • Participate in the Democratic and Republican national conventions this summer;
  • Coordinate with state and national partner organizations to leverage collective efforts;
  • Release a 2021 federal policy agenda for the Executive and Legislative branches detailing immediate and long-term solutions to consider;
  • And more.

Ahead of the 2016 presidential elections, FFYF undertook similar efforts, meeting with virtually all of the Republican and Democratic presidential campaigns to share briefing materials and polling data. Then on November 7, 2016 – the day after the election – FFYF released its Plan for Solutions, a series of bipartisan policy recommendations for the new administration and Congress aimed at strengthening existing early learning programs, as well as opportunities to harness the growing momentum toward establishing a stronger continuum of high-quality education and care. The policy plan was supported by a video ad campaign targeting lawmakers in Washington.

Investing in high-quality child care is a solution that creates upward mobility by ensuring all children have the opportunity to build foundations for long-term success in life. Children from low-income families who receive a high-quality early childhood education are more likely to earn higher wages, live healthier lives, avoid incarceration, raise stronger families, and contribute to society. And access to quality care is critical for working families, offering parents better job stability and overall economic security. Today, however, families are struggling to find and afford high-quality opportunities for their children from birth through age five. Across the country, more than half of people (51%) live in a child care desert where the number of children under five greatly outnumbers available child care slots. Learn more about the importance of increasing access to and the affordability of quality child care at

The First Five Years Fund is the leading bipartisan federal advocacy organization working to ensure all children from birth through age five have equal access to affordable, comprehensive, high-quality care and education to support their healthy development and help them achieve their full potential in school and life. FFYF seeks to expand federal support for all early learning and care opportunities that are high-quality and focused first on serving those children most-at-risk.


Stay Updated

Receive monthly updates on the latest news, policy, and actions to advance federal investment in children and their families.