Education

WSRE’s inStudio shines light on early childhood education

The City of Pensacola coined the slogan, “America’s First Settlement,” in reference to the 1559 expedition by Don Tristan de Luna that led to the first European presence in the U.S.

Pensacola now is seeking another first with a bold, new slogan: “America’s First Early Learning City.”

America’s First EarlyLearning  City would be one in which all the parts of the community work as one to ensure that every child is ready for kindergarten.

On Thursday, May 11 at 7 p.m and midnight, WSRE’s “inStudio” presents “The Road to America’s First Early Learning City.”

Watch the video here.

InStudio’s producer and host Jeff Weeks talks to representatives from the Early Learning Coalition of Escambia County, Every Child a Reader in Escambia County, Studer Community Institute and WSRE Educational Services about their involvement in early childhood education and efforts to put Pensacola on the map as the nation’s First Early Learning City.

Increasing evidence shows that investing in early education provides significant benefits to children, families and society as as whole, increasing economic growth and promoting greater opportunities.

Research shows that nearly 85 percent of the brain is fully developed by age 3. That’s why the early years of a child’s life are so critical to the physical development of the brain.

Through education initiatives, innovative programs and engaging partnerships among agencies, organizations and businesses, Pensacola is on the road to creating a place that enlists the entire community that supports early brain development, parent engagement and school readiness for all children, especially those from ages 0 to 5.

Together, Pensacola aims to transform “America’s First Settlement” into the “First Early Learning City,” a place in which the entire community builds a culture of lifelong learning.

InStudio’s program on Thursday, May 11, appears in three segments, focusing on various parts of early education and childhood development.

The first segment, “The Road to America’s First Early Learning City/Grow with Me,” features:

— Shannon Nickinson, Project Manager, Studer Community Institute

— Bruce Watson, Executive Director, Early Learning Coalition of Escambia County

— Vicki Pugh, Program Improvement Director, Early Learning Coalition of Escambia County.

Segment two, “ECARE Reading Pal Program,” features:

— Jennifer Grove, Vice Chair, Every Child a Reader in Escambia (Workforce Development Manager, Gulf Power)

— Reggie Dogan, ECARE Reading Pal Volunteer (Project Manager, Studer Community Institute)

The final segment, “WSRE PBS KIDS TV Channel & Educational Resources; Imagination Station,” features:

— Jill Hubbs, Educational Services Director, WSRE.

The three segments will include a few related clips from Robert Putnam’s visit to Pensacola last month.

Putnam, a public policy professor at Harvard University and bestselling author, was part of WSRE’s Public Square Speakers Series, in partnership with Studer Community Institute on April 18.

Putnam’s 2015 book, “Our Kids: The American Dream in Crisis,” chronicled the growing gap in opportunity for American youth and offers a groundbreaking examination of why fewer Americans today have the opportunity for upward mobility — the chance to work hard, achieve success and live better lives than those of previous generations.

His work includes “Making Democracy Work’ and “Bowling Alone: The Collapse and Revival of American Community.”