Another school year at Educare Arizona!
I think everyone's job should include a performance of I Don't Know Why She Swallowed That Fly, sung and acted out in front of sets the kids made themselves, in the middle of a beautiful courtyard designed specifically for young learners. More importantly, I think everyone under the age of five should get the opportunity to sing, dance and play in a purposeful space, guided by highly trained teachers, in a well-structured day that includes great nutrition, kindness, and quality care.
As I spend more time around the staff, teachers, children and parents at Educare Arizona, the connection between place, program and policy is ever-present, and so meaningful: as the country braces for cuts to spending on social programs, Arizona has already eliminated the childcare subsidy, leaving children of low-income parents without the best resources to start their lives as learners. Educare Arizona fills a critical need, and we are proud to have played a role in creating what will be a difference-maker in Arizona and beyond for generations to come.
Join us! And thank you for caring about children.
What a summer! Just after the Steve Nash Foundation's Showdown (www.stevenash.org/showdown), a fundraiser to benefit Educare Arizona came to a close, the NBA's free agency period opened, and ended with the League's perennial assist leader landing the starting point guard job with the Los Angeles Lakers.
Now wearing #10 (a nod to his soccer heritage), Steve will continue to be playing for kids - he remains committed to the model of excellence at work at Educare Arizona, and to the necessity of highest quality early learning opportunities for all kids, including children living in poverty. More about his exploits will be on the Steve Nash Foundation's new twitter handle, @SteveNashFdn.
Educare Arizona's also got some new leadership - joining us is Christy McClendon, as Educare Arizona's new President - and a new social media look: you can now follow Educare Arizona on twitter, @EducareArizona.
Getting the best possible start in life and learning has been showing to have a dramatic affect on later life - from academics, to interpersonal relationships, to professional success, the first five years matter.
With a new school year beginning, we're hoping you'll be with us as Educare Arizona continues to grow health in kids, bring families needed resources, and provide a true showroom for Early Head Start and Head Start potential. Learn more about us at educarearizona.org or stevenash.org - and thanks for your assist!
Being greeted by children at Educare Arizona is one my favorite things about my job. Watching a preschooler who was previously too shy to make eye contact tell me with such excitement about the fish in her classroom is instant evidence that the individualized attention Educare Arizona provides makes kids feel great about themselves. Data collection and analysis correlates that feeling of confidence with all kinds of positive outcomes: better classroom performance, retention, physical health, and family dynamics. Happy kids also contribute enormously to growing healthy communities.
Your support keeps it all going -- with so many ways to support Educare Arizona, we encourage you to tell your friends, and don't hesitate to reach out to Educare Arizona directly if you have any questions. Tell them Steve sent you.