Supporting access to affordable, high-quality early learning begins in the heart of our communities.

This past week, MomsRising released the Strong Start for Strong Cities, an initiative that supports access to affordable, high-quality early learning opportunities in cities across the country. Together with The National League of Cities and School Readiness Consulting, MomsRising released a guide for how mayors and other municipal leaders can support early learning.

The guide provides a close-up cross-section of cities across the country – both urban and rural, red and blue – demonstrating investment in early learning at the local level. From the example set by mayors and other local leaders, the guide articulates actionable ways in which leaders can raise public awareness, enhance quality, build infrastructure, or enlist community leaders and businesses to support early learning.

The new resource specifically highlights:

  • Engaging with Community Members and Leaders
    • Dayton, OH: “Mayor Nan Whaley met with over 400 parents, educators, community leaders and early childhood specialists in 11 listening sessions to learn what the strengths and obstacles are to accessing high-quality services in the area.”
  • Incorporating Early Learning into City Planning
    • Santa Monica, CA: “Under a city ordinance in Santa Monica, developers must pay a per square footage allotment to fund construction of new child care facilities. Developers may avoid this fee if they agree to build a child care facility.”
  • Supporting a Mixed-Delivery System
    • Providence, RI: “Under an effort started by former Mayor Angel Taveras, city staff and community partners in Providence take family, friend, and neighbor training into neighborhoods, organizing peer-networking gatherings in familiar, easily accessible venues.”

Read MomsRising’s best practices and testimonials here.