Work Begins on Governor’s Education and Workforce Roundtable

by | Feb 19, 2016

LB773 was introduced by Senator John Stinner this legislative session to create the Early Childhood Workforce Development Task Force. Much has happened since the bill was introduced on January 8. 

About the same time as the bill’s public hearing before the Education Committee on January 19, Governor Pete Ricketts announced creation of the Education and Workforce Roundtable (EdW Roundtable) and invited various stakeholders from the public and private sectors to participate.

The Governor describes the EdW Roundtable as a forum to collaboratively identify issues and solutions impacting students' transitions in the early childhood to workforce pipeline. Dr. Sam Meisels, Executive Director of the Buffett Early Childhood Institute, was asked to represent early childhood professionals on the Roundtable.

At its first meeting February 12, the Roundtable began delving into early childhood issues, opening an opportunity for the Governor and Roundtable members to understand early childhood within the broader context of education and workforce development. 

Opportunity to Collaborate
To work collaboratively with this broader effort, we have made the strategic decision to not have LB773 advance this session. Instead, the Institute will continue convening higher education representatives and others to address recruitment, preparation and retention issues among the workforce to close the achievement gap for young children at risk of failing in school. Findings from these gatherings will be provided to the Roundtable to inform and advance their early childhood work.

While we did not anticipate leaving LB773 behind in this way, there’s tremendous opportunity to work collaboratively across systems and branches of government. We hope the long-term collaboration will pay great dividends with development of an outstanding early childhood workforce in Nebraska.

Thank You, Senator Stinner
We’d like to thank Senator Stinner for his commitment to our youngest children and his work to ensure that Nebraska’s children enter school ready to learn.

We look forward to the months ahead as we all work toward the goal of narrowing the achievement gap facing our youngest children at risk, putting them on a path to lifelong success. We’ll continue to update you as the work of these collective efforts moves forward.

Jen Goettemoeller
Senior Policy Associate
First Five Nebraska

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