Early care and learning issues matter to the near- and long-term prosperity and vitality of our state and its communities. This is why Nebraska's decision makers need the perspectives of citizen-leaders to influence public policies that promote the healthy development of our youngest children.
The Nebraska Early Childhood Policy Leadership Academy is a non-partisan project designed to help citizen-leaders grow in knowledge and skills to effectively engage lawmakers and major influencers on early care and learning issues. Participants will:
The inaugural year of the Policy Academy will be a five-month commitment from January to May, 2019. Participants will meet monthly, with in-person meetings alternating with “virtual” meetings online.
Future classes of the Policy Leadership Academy (2020 and beyond) may involve a longer curriculum and time commitment.
The inaugural class of the Policy Leadership Academy will be primarily recruited from communities currently participating in Nebraska Children’s Communities for Kids initiative. This includes Columbus, Gothenburg, Grand Island, Lexington, Lincoln, Norfolk, Omaha, Pender, Red Cloud, Schuyler and York, as well as the greater Nebraska Panhandle area.
Participants from other communities may be considered based on available space in the inaugural class of the program and at the discretion of the Academy’s director.
Applicants for the Policy Leadership Academy should expect to attend all online and in-person meetings and demonstrate an active interest in different aspects of community development, early childhood policy and government affairs.
January 16: Grand Island | 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT | Orientation: Understanding your community's early childhood needs
February 20: Virtual Meeting | 10 a.m. to noon CT, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. MT | Nebraska's Unicameral: How the Legislature operates and makes funding decisions
March 20: Lincoln | 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT | Visit to the Legislature: Techniques for engaging with legislators, followed by visits with district senators
April 17: Virtual Meeting | 10 a.m. to noon CT, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. MT | Building Relationships with Legislators: Deepening the engagement of legislators and staff with early childhood issues
May 15: Gothenburg | 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. CT | Building Community Engagement and Awareness: Techniques for communicating effectively with key audiences and influencers at the local level