Early childhood critical to our community’s economy

Published 4:58pm Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Last week’s appointment and resignation of the state’s director of the Division of Child Development and Early Education brought the issue of young children to the forefront. Let’s hope it stays it there.

Investments in early child care and education programs are critical to our community’s enduring economic success. We will continue to need employees with hard skills in math, reading and writing as well as important “soft” skills such as communication, collaboration and critical thinking. These necessary skills are developed in the first five years of life. Ninety percent of critical brain development happens during that time. The actual wiring that forms the brain’s architecture happens in infancy and early childhood. And how that wiring is formed, either as a strong or weak foundation, depends on a child’s earliest experiences.

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