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Washington Preschool Program

 

Client: Washington Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction & Washington Department of Early Learning

Overview

During the 2010 session, the Washington Legislature determined that expansion of early learning opportunities for children was needed.  In Senate Bill 6759, the Legislature directed the Office of the Superintendent of Public Instruction (OSPI) and the Department of Early Learning (DEL) to convene a technical work group to study the barriers and opportunities of providing an enhanced preschool program as part of the basic education program or as an entitlement and to make recommendations.

Challenge

OSPI and DEL charged Dovetailing with staffing and facilitating the Technical Work Group and writing the Work Group’s report and recommendations to the Legislature.  The timeframe was short and advocates had a variety of views on how the proposed preschool program should be designed.

Approach

Dovetailing interviewed key informants who had been part of the legislative deliberations as well as technical experts that had been involved in previous preschool planning efforts. We also researched and analyzed the best practices of others states and used the results to inform deliberations in the technical work group. We planned targeted technical work group conversations structuring sessions around key design choices and crafted the report.

Results

The resulting Final Recommendations of the Early Learning Technical Work Group have framed deliberations about Washington Preschool since that time.  Most recently, the City of Seattle has required that the "Seattle Preschool for All" strategy incorporate evidence-based practices consistent with the Washington Preschool Recommendations and the National Institute for Early Education Research. 

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