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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Tuesday, April 11, 2006                    

 

NGA AWARDS MISSISSIPPI GRANT FOR EARLY CHILDHOOD DEVELOPMENT  
Mississippi one of seven states to receive funding for school readiness

 

(JACKSON, Mississippi) – Governor Haley Barbour is pleased to announce Mississippi as one of seven states selected to receive a grant of $10,000 from the National Governors Association (NGA) Center for Best Practices to support Governors’ Early Childhood Summits.

 

Made possible by the generous support of the Buffett Early Childhood Foundation, these summits seek to engage key state and local leaders in advancing a state policy agenda that addresses developmental needs of children from before birth to kindergarten and beyond.

 

“I am pleased that Mississippi was selected to receive these grants for such an important cause,” Governor Barbour said. “These summits are a positive step toward advancing policies to ensure a solid foundation for Mississippi’s children at a very young age. Adequately preparing our children for school can greatly enhance performance capabilities.”

 

Other grantees selected to receive funding are Arizona, Illinois, Minnesota, South Carolina and Washington. The NGA Center will work with the seven states to enhance school readiness by incorporating core principles, policy frameworks and Ready States recommendations found in the NGA Center brief, Building the Foundation for Bright Futures: Final Report of the NGA Task Force on School Readiness.

 

These seven grantees were chosen by an independent selection committee consisting of national policy organization representatives and early childhood experts. Similarities in winning proposals were strong gubernatorial commitment to building a comprehensive statewide system for a “birth-to-five” state policy agenda; a clear plan for school readiness that involves families, schools, and communities; and accountability for results between state and local levels of government.

 

The grants will be administered by the NGA Center for Best Practices.