Rotary Club Learns About Early Childhood Education

The Rotary Club of Alexandria learned about the value of early childhood education today.  ABC 31 News Joel Massey was there and has this report.

Cindy Rushing spoke at the Rotary Club of Alexandria about the importance of early childhood development and head start for kids prior to kindergarten.

“I’ve just always been passionate about early childhood.  I’ve been in the business about 40 years and most of my experience is in early childhood. As a classroom teacher I found that we make so much of a difference in what children learn and can do by the time they are entering kindergarten.”

Rushing spoke about the early childhood programs in Rapides Parish.

“We have a strong vibrant program in Rapides Parish and have had for about seven to eight years and I’m speaking today to show why an investment in early childhood is one of the best things that we can do.  We know that 90 percent of a child’s brain develops by age five, and so the birth to five years of age is the critical time in which we need to provide high quality experiences for our children.”

Rushing said it is important to reach a child early to prepare them for success in school.

“If we reach them at an early age, we provide them with those experiences that they need to be successful it can start with a child that is an infant.  So, we provide infant, toddler, Pre-K, K-er for all our children through the Rapides Early Childhood Network.”

She says the program seeks to go beyond the basics of math and language arts.

“And so we educate the whole child.  So, it’s not just looking at math or literacy skills even though those are very important.  But it’s looking at language, looking at social emotional development.  It’s helping children to develop that confidence they need to be able to learn.”