OEL releases 2013-2014 Annual Report.
While fiscal year 2012-2013 was a year of transition for the Office of Early Learning, the most recent fiscal year (2013-2014) proved to be a period when new leadership, organizational structure, direction and vision coalesced, producing results that demonstrated the office was moving in the right direction.
The first day of the fiscal year—July 1, 2013—was also the day that House Bill 7165 went into effect. Designed to improve quality, while increasing accountability and transparency for the state’s early learning programs, this important legislation moved OEL into the Florida Department of Education. The law consolidated department duties and responsibilities for voluntary prekindergarten within early learning, and directed a number of additional changes to the early learning system across the state.
The impact of HB 7165 was immediately felt as the challenge of making changes to existing rules and creating new ones dictated the need for statewide workshops and strict schedules. Not unlike building a new model of an aircraft while the plane is in mid-flight, OEL’s work proceeded apace throughout the year at the same time that new responsibilities and functions were being incorporated. A dynamic 2013-2014 strategic plan guided our work, ensuring that we remained true to our mission—to administer and deliver a high-quality, comprehensive system of early learning services—and to our vision of a Florida where every child has access to quality early learning services.
The annual report provides an overview of the activities and accomplishments of OEL, early learning coalitions and partner organizations across the state during the 2013-2014 fiscal year period.