WASHINGTON, DC – September 8, 2015 – First Five Years Fund, a bi-partisan advocacy organization dedicated to quality early childhood education for disadvantaged children from birth to age five, has joined P21, the nation’s leader advocating for 21st century readiness for every student. By becoming a P21 member, First Five Years Fund enters P21’s diverse coalition of education leaders, the business community, and policymakers supporting readiness for college, career, and citizenship along the entire continuum of learning.

Executive director Kris Perry will represent First Five Years Fund on P21’s strategic council and will contribute to P21’s ongoing work in building high-quality early learning opportunities for all children: “Smart investments in high-quality early childhood education produce economic and social dividends for children, families and society. We are thrilled to join P21’s diverse coalition of partners as we make quality early childhood education a national priority.” Perry said.

“First Five Years Fund is a welcome partner in P21’s ongoing efforts to thoughtfully inform national policy, support strong state strategies, and illustrate the importance of high quality 21st century learning for all of our earliest learners” said Liz Fogel, director of education for the Walt Disney Company, and incoming P21 board chair.

P21 has recently launched a working group to address 21st century early learning, and is working with P21 members, partners, and states to connect early learning opportunities to school and life readiness.

# # #

The First Five Years Fund helps America achieve better results in education, health and economic productivity through investments in quality early childhood education programs for disadvantaged children. FFYF provides knowledge, data, and advocacy – persuading federal policymakers to make investments in the first five years of a child’s life that create greater returns for all. www.ffyf.org

P21 recognizes that all learners need educational experiences in school and beyond, from cradle to career, to build knowledge and skills for success in a globally and digitally interconnected world.  Representing over 5 million members of the global workforce, P21 is a catalyst organization uniting business, government and education leaders from the U.S. and abroad to advance evidence-based education policy and practice and to make innovative teaching and learning a reality for all. Learn more at www.p21.org and @P21Learning

P21 Members: American Camp Association, American Federation of Teachers, Apple Inc., Asia Society, Bahcesehir K-12 Schools, Cable Impacts Foundation, The College Board, Common Sense Media, Crayola, Destination Imagination, Duck Learning, EF Education First, Education Networks of America, First Five Years Fund, Fisher-Price, Ford Motor Company Fund, Future Problem Solving Program International, Gale Cengage Learning, Goddard Systems Inc., Intel Corporation, Learning.com, LEGO Education, National Board for Professional Teaching Standards, National Education Association, PBS, Pearson, Project Management Institute Educational Foundation, U.S. Fund for UNICEF, VIF International Education, and The Walt Disney Company

P21 Leadership States: Arizona, California, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota, Vermont, West Virginia and Wisconsin

Media contacts:

Charlie Joughin, First Five Years Fund, cjoughin@ffyf.org, 202-730-0249

Tatyana Warrick, P21, tatyana@p21.org, 202-312-6430