“Do not get lost in a sea of despair. Be hopeful, be optimistic. Our struggle is not the struggle of a day, a week, a month, or a year, it is the struggle of a lifetime. Never, ever be afraid to make some noise and get in good trouble, necessary trouble.”– A tweet from June 2018, Rep. John Lewis
Recently Rep. John Lewis, the freedom fighter who devoted his life activism for justice and equality died. This was challenging for our country because he was such a powerful voice and advocate.
He had a way with words that have created quotes, hashtags and memes. He was often requested for graduations, keynote addresses, and many other oratorical opportunities. I hope we as a community gave him his flowers while he was alive. He deserved them and so much more. His legacy must live on in each of us who believe in what he stood for.
His words often enlightened and empowered. The above quoted tweet spoke to me as we have unique opportunities to rebuild, restructure, and redesign what education is. This pandemic has revealed many things to society. It is almost as if the curtain has fallen. The truth is being revealed.
Funding is a major challenge within Early Childhood. Until our society begins to value the foundation, we will continue to have these conversations. We are currently collecting data to prove the necessity of early learning initiatives. Society values childcare currently which is a step forward. I wonder how quickly they will forget.
In Public School, Pre Kindergarten classrooms are often left out due to the gap in content and goals. Also with the funding sources and requirements, it’s a lot of work on employees. With the increase in SEL (Social-Emotional Learning) initiatives, it seems as if they would lean, value, and mimic Early Learning environments. Social and Emotional Learning is one of our core values.
It’s time to bring our folding chair to the the tables we are quit often not given a seat at. It is time for policy makers to get on one accord and collectively create policies that hold all stakeholders accountable and not just underpaid educators and caregivers. It is time for us to make some necessary noise. We’ve collected data, we’ve been patient, we’ve even tried it every way except for the necessary way. So now it’s time to get in some trouble. Ruffle some feathers in a good way. We must VOTE and pay attention to who we vote for and what they believe in. We can’t continue not to focus on the foundation. Our society continues to focus on the results without planting the necessary seeds and nurturing the process!
We must eliminate fear in this lifetime of work for early childhood. Advocating for what you know is right and essential for the future of our society. We must stand up, speak up, and speak out!