Early Childhood Day at the Legislature

Highlights from ECDL 2021

More than three hundred early childhood professionals and providers, parents, employers, and business owners attended this year’s Early Childhood Day at the Legislature (ECDL) virtually on March 10, 2021. People from all over the state gathered online to ask the 55 participating legislators and administrators to invest in kids.

Continue reading for photos and a recap of the day and remember to save the date for the 28th Annual ECDL on Wednesday, March 9, 2022!

This inspiring annual day of advocacy, education, and networking was co-hosted by the Vermont Early Childhood Advocacy Alliance, Let’s Grow Kids, and Building Bright Futures, and co-sponsored by 11 funders, organizations, and businesses.

Speakers in the day’s opening session included Lieutenant Governor Molly Gray and Speaker of the House Jill Krowinski. They shared inspiring reflections on the past, present, and future of early childhood advocacy in Vermont.

The day included early childhood issue workshops facilitated by some of the Alliance’s lead organizations, where advocates had a chance to dig deeper into policy initiatives. As a special feature this year, all issue sessions were recorded and will be available to view on our Whova site until early June! You can re-watch the workshop you attended or click into other sessions to learn more about different issues.

Our Zoom rooms were packed for a “luncheon” attended by 55 legislators and administrators. During lunch, early childhood stakeholders had an opportunity to speak with policy makers about key issues from the Vermont Early Childhood Advocacy Alliance’s 2021 Legislative Agenda, such as: family and medical leave insurance; housing programs; high-quality, affordable child care; and funding for Children’s Integrated Services (CIS) and Parent Child Centers, among other issues.

After lunch, participants had time to debrief and network before gathering together again for concluding remarks by Senate President Pro Tempore Becca Balint, Governor Phil Scott, and Congressman Peter Welch. Senator Balint spoke powerfully about the importance of safe, affordable housing for children and families.

“It’s important to have an integrated system of services that serves our early childhood communities while respecting the role of private providers,” said Governor Phil Scott in his recorded remarks.

Congressman Peter Welch noted, “In Washington, Bernie and I and Patrick are doing all we can to help families and to help put a focus on the needs of children and we’ll keep that up.”

At the virtual State House, Rep. Emma Mulvaney-Stanak offered a Devotional on the House floor. Later in the week, Rep. Kathleen James sponsored a Resolution honoring this year’s ECDL.

Thank you to everyone who was part of this wonderful event this year! We look forward to seeing you in person next year.

Learn more about the organizations that support ECDL in our 2021 Sponsor Guide.

ECDL Toolkit