Join us for a conversation about the realities of implementing the early years of education in California and some of the strategies to do better for children. The pandemic has only increased the pressure on California’s schools to ensure children are on track for postsecondary success – and to do so in an equitable way. Over the next few years, that goal can only be accomplished by improving outcomes in early childhood and early elementary years. As California looks to strengthen its early education system, policy changes and new capacities could make a major difference in how schools help children thrive.
Dr. Carla Bryant, Panelist. Carla has over thirty years of national experience creating culturally competent policies, programs, and procedures for comprehensive early learning, P-3, elementary, family support, and after-school programs. She is the creator of the District Innovation and Leadership for Early Education, an initiative of the Californians Dedicated to Education Foundation. The initiative’s focus is to support school districts succeed in creating and implementing effective early learning structures that assist children from communities with less social, political, and monetary capital build a strong educational foundation.
Patricia Lozano, Panelist. Patricia has been the executive director of Early Edge California since 2017. She is also a board of directors member of Parents as Teachers (PAT). Prior to joining Early Edge California, Patricia served as a senior program officer at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and worked on their national Early Learning strategy. In California, she has spearheaded projects at UCLA’s Center for Improving Child Care Quality, First 5 LA, and the RAND Corporation, and developed research and evaluation projects to find evidence-based best practices for teachers to work with Dual Language Learners. As a former teacher and associate director at a child development center, Patricia is passionate about supporting the needs of early childhood educators and improving quality for young children. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from Los Andes University in Colombia and a Masters in Psychology (M.A.), Child Development Concentration, from California State University, San Bernardino.
Sarah Neville-Morgan, Panelist. Sarah is currently the Deputy Superintendent of Public Instruction at CDE. She started her career at CDE as a Child Development Consultant in 2011. In 2013 she left to become the Deputy Director of Program Management at First 5 California. There, she managed a team and funding focused on closing the achievement gap and supporting quality early learning. Neville-Morgan also worked as the Deputy Executive Director of the Governor’s Early Learning Advisory Council during the Schwarzenegger and Brown administrations and as an Academic Child Development Specialist at the University of California, Davis Center for Child and Family Studies. She also has worked in a child care resource and referral agency, with foster care education programs, and has supported school teen parent programs. She returned to the CDE in 2017 to lead the Early Learning and Care Division.
Elliot Regenstein, Report Author and Event Moderator. Elliot is a Chicago-based partner at Foresight Law + Policy. Elliot has extensive experience in state-level policy and advocacy, with a particular focus on early learning; he has also consulted with more than two dozen states on a wide range of education policy topics. Much of his work focuses on how decision-making occurs in state education and early education systems: who is responsible for which decisions, what information they have to support those decisions, and what incentives are acting on key stakeholders. Since 2010 Elliot has worked with early learning leaders in California on numerous projects – including multiple applications for federal grants, and serving as part of the team that developed the California Comprehensive Early Learning Plan in 2013.