How can you use children's literature to teach social and emotional skills? Find out in April's VPK Snapshots.


Book nooks provide a guide for teaching social and emotional skills, technology in preschool and celebrating the Week of the Young Child in the April issue of VPK Snapshots.

Professional development opportunities for providers throughout Florida and more news in April's Early Learning Update.


Several early learning coalitions are offering professional development training or conferences to providers. Find out more in the April edition of Early Learning Update.

Dealing with your preschooler's temper tantrums can be tough. Find out the best ways to minimize their meltdown in the April Parents' Pages.


Read about ways to manage your child's meltdowns, safety tips and checklists for Safe Kids Day, social development timeline for 3- to 5-year-olds and more in the April Parents' Pages.

New technology increases talk between young children and caregivers. Find out how and read more early learning news in March's Early Learning Update.


A program that measures talk helps boost interaction with young children, an early learning coalition calls on parents to "Unplug and Connect" and more in coalition news.

You may have heard about the "terrible twos," but what should you expect from your 2-year-old? Find out in the March Parents' Pages.


Read about your toddler's social development timeline, St. Patrick's Day, Children's Week in Florida, National Nutrition and Read Aloud months, and more in the March Parents' Pages.

Find out what Developmentally Appropriate Practices are and how to use them with children in March's VPK Snapshots.


Effective teachers and caregivers implement Developmentally Appropriate Practices to help children learn, build relationships and achieve goals.

There is a lot of activity in early learning around Florida. Read about it in February's Early Learning Update.


Community partnerships bring benefits to children and families across the state. See how they work in the February edition of Early Learning Update.

Learn about the role executive function skills play in early childhood development in February's VPK Snapshots.


Executive function skills are fundamental to building a strong foundation for the early development of both cognitive and social competencies.

Use these tips to win your preschooler's cooperation. Make Valentine's Day meaningful. These stories and more in Parents' Pages.


One of the most common problems parents of preschoolers list is getting their preschooler to cooperate. February's Parents Pages has some tips.

Governor Scott's "Fighting for Florida's Future” Budget Invests in Florida's Future Students


Governor Rick Scott released his "Fighting for Florida's Future" budget today, which includes an increase of approximately $36.1 million for early learning.

Check out what's new in early learning around the state.


January's Early Learning Update has news and information from and about early learning coalitions from around Florida.

Dealing with preschooler whining. Reading with your child. These articles and more in January Parents' Pages.


Start 2017 reading with your child every day. Research shows that's one of the most important ways to help your child become a reader. Want to win the battle against whining? Most parents do. Get some tips in January's Parents' Pages.

Office of Early Learning releases 2015-2016 annual report.


Working with early learning coalitions, partnering agencies, child care providers, and early child care and education stakeholders, the Office of Early Learning made steady progress in 2015-2016.

See what's happening at early learning coalitions around the state in December's Early Learning Update.


Early learning coalitions earn praise for partnering, host conferences and break new ground. Learn about these activities and more in the December issue of Early Learning Update.

Check out VPK Snapshots, the brand new newsletter for VPK providers and educators.


Learn how making little things count can add up to big results for children in VPK. Read about this and much more in the first issue of VPK Snapshots.

Find tips to stay safe and enjoy fun activities as you celebrate winter in Florida in December's Parents' Pages.


Remind your children why it is important to keep their hands clean and protect them from the flu virus. Encourage kids to make their own New Year's resolutions before 2017.

Learn how people (and dogs) are giving back this holiday season in November's Early Learning Update.


Reading events and activities encourage early learning during the holiday season and coalitions are giving back to needy families in the latest Early Learning Update.

Family engagement and traditions are in the spotlight in November's Parents' Pages.


November is Family Engagement Month and we are celebrating thankful families and honoring traditions passed down through generations.

Read about health and safety changes for child care providers, prepare for a gala, discover how to become a literacy buddy and more in October's Early Learning Update.


October's Early Learning Update offers information from early learning coalitions throughout the state.

New Health and Safety Inspections to Begin for Child Care Providers


Rule 6M-4.620 goes into effect late October 2016

Fall fun, learning and activities take over October's Parents' Pages.


Get ready for fun fall learning, take the first steps to prevent bullying and learn more about the importance of your child's health at an early age.

Get the latest news about early learning events across Florida in September's Early Learning Update.


Discover early literacy events taking place in October. Attend a conference or participate in an upcoming race. Read about a new CEO who's taken over the helm of an early learning coalition.

Baby safety, Grandparents Day, international literacy importance and more in September's Parents' Pages.


Help your children gain new wisdom from their elders during Grandparents Day on Sept. 11 and learn how you can celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month through Oct. 15.

Discover resources and events throughout the state with August's Early Learning Update.


Conferences, initiatives and annual events take over this month's issue of the Early Learning Update.

Find tips for heading back to school and how to continue learning every day and everywhere in August's Parents' Pages.


We're heading back to school in the latest issue of Parents' Pages. Discover how to make this school year great with a new app and other learning tools.

Florida selected for project to impact early education for young children from low-income families.


Florida is one of nine states and territories that will be part of the Impact Project. The project is intended to help develop a participant's capacity to provide quality early education to young children from low-income families.

Continue learning all summer with July's Early Learning Update.


Prepare for mosquitoes before you have fun on the go, at home, with water and in nature.

State agencies to hold informational meetings across Florida to discuss new regulations that will impact child care providers.


Florida's Office of Early Learning and Department of Children and Families Office of Child Care Regulation will be traveling together around the state. The two offices will host provider meetings to discuss recent federal and state statutory changes to school readiness and child care regulations, as well as changes to background screening requirements that affect all child care and school readiness program providers.

Celebrate Fourth of July safely and continue teaching literacy throughout summer with July's Parents' Pages.


Learn what precautions to take while celebrating the Independence Day holiday, prepare for your children's immunizations and keep learning throughout the summer.

Discover fun at home, on the go, with water and in nature with summer activities.


Celebrate summer with your children by having fun as a family! Learning through water play, trips to special places, exploring nature and playing at home help your children continue to develop language, as well as science, math and literacy concepts all summer.

Stay up-to-date with coalition news across the state and learn how to make the most of your summer.


Local officers read to students with the "books and badges" program and organizations team together to promote the #BringABook initiative.

Celebrate Great Outdoors Month, while preparing for summer heat and mosquitoes with June's Parents' Pages.


While summer is full of fun in the sun, it's important to prepare your family for anything. Learn how to prevent a heatstroke tragedy during Florida's increasingly high temperatures and how to ward off pesky mosquitoes in June's Parents' Pages.

May's Early Learning Update focuses on an innovative app for parents and a new name for a special needs scholarship.


A new, innovative app, known as Vroom, promotes brain-building moments for young children and the Gardiner Scholarship program helps parents of children with special needs pay for tuition and more.

Discover how to keep your baby safe around water and make play spaces safe at home in May's Parents' Pages.


See how a mother's nurturing affects a baby's future development. Practice safe swimming skills with little ones. Step away from the electronics and take steps outside. Read these stories in May's Parents' Pages.

Governor Rick Scott issues proclamation for Provider Appreciation Day


Governor Rick Scott has proclaimed May 6, 2016, Provider Appreciation Day in the state of Florida. The Friday before Mother’s Day is also a national day of recognition for child care providers.

Read about the new law that will extend VPK eligibility.


Florida parents whose children are born between Feb. 2 and Sept. 1 in a calendar year will soon have the option to enroll their children in Florida's free, Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) Education Program in either of two years.

School readiness providers get extra week to apply.


Because of the large number of providers still applying for the 2016-17 Early Learning Performance Funding Project, the online application will remain available until midnight Friday, April 29.

See how to combine learning and gardening in April's Parents' Pages.


Spring is in full bloom throughout Florida, making it the perfect time to get outside with your children to try fun, new activities.

Office of Early Learning applauds Governor Rick Scott for signing bill to extend VPK eligibility.


House Bill 7029 was one of 20 bills Gov. Scott signed yesterday and will take effect July 1, 2016.

Early learning provides eye-opening experience.


For the parents of 3-year-old Jameson LeMay, a vision test opened their eyes to early detection.

Check out what's happening for early learning in Florida in April's update.


Pinwheels are raising awareness to prevent child abuse, performance funding builds on past success and early learning coalitions look forward to upcoming events and conferences.

Early learning works for two former VPK students.


For Jack Pease and Ava Keeney, attending VPK prepared them for a lifetime of success in learning.

Questions about toilet training? Getting your child to want healthy foods? Read this month's Parents' Pages.


Learn more about the importance of reading aloud with your child and practicing healthy eating habits this March.

Reading and listening take over March's Early Learning Update.


Read Across America and promoting early literacy take front and center alongside coalition news.

Discover the wonder of wondering in February's Parents' Pages.


Learn how you can celebrate Dr. Seuss' birthday and teach empathy and wondering in February's Parents' Pages. Read these articles and more.

Guest Chef Paula with Annie and her mother Tara at the Parfait Taste Testing Contest.

Winners announced for two VPK parfait contests.


A total of six winners were announced Monday, Feb. 15, 2016, in two separate VPK parfait contests. The Parfait Presentation Photo Contest and Parfait Taste Testing Contest received more than 40 entries together.

Paula Kendrick, Fresh from Florida Kids Chef

Preschoolers and pre-K programs to compete for best VPK parfait


Paula Kendrick, Fresh from Florida Kids chef, will judge entries from VPK programs as part of the month-long celebration of VPK’s 10th birthday. The judging will take place Friday, Feb. 12, beginning at 10:15 a.m. at the Early Learning Coalition of the Big Bend Region's Tallahassee offices.

It's not too late to celebrate VPK's 10th birthday! Find out more about that and coalition news in February's Early Learning Update.


Check out the latest on our VPK birthday celebration and good news surrounding coalitions statewide.

Happy birthday, VPK!

VPK's month-long 10th birthday celebration gets off to a good start.


Florida leaders who helped start VPK gathered in front of the steps of the historic old Capitol Tuesday, Jan. 26, to help celebrate the early learning program's 10-year mark.

Get your Early Learning Update for January 2016.


Check out the latest in coalition news and learn how you can celebrate VPK's 10th Birthday.

See how parents can help their children learn to read at an early age.


Take part in Celebrate Literacy Week, Florida!

Governor Scott proclaims Jan. 26 as day to recognize VPK's 10 years.


Governor Rick Scott has signed a proclamation to recognize Jan. 26, 2016, as the 10-year milestone for Florida's Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) Education Program.

Florida’s VPK Program to celebrate 10 years of success.


Month of statewide events and activities recognizing early learning program’s 10-year mark will kick off in Tallahassee during Children’s Capitol for a Day.

Office of Early Learning releases 2014-2015 annual report.


Hard work moved some important early learning projects forward in 2014-2015 that will have a positive impact on quality and efficiency for young children and families in Florida.

Find holiday tips and remain active during the season in December's Parent's Pages.


The December issue of Parents' Page is full of information on how to prepare your child for holiday events and how to remain active throughout the season. Read these articles and more.

Governor Rick Scott appoints six to Child Care Executive Partnership


Governor Rick Scott has appointed six board members to the Child Care Executive Partnership, a public/private partnership that helps employers meet the needs of a growing segment of their workforce – working parents. Through CCEP, federal and state funding is “matched” with contributions from local governments, charitable foundations and private businesses on a dollar-for-dollar basis to provide child care services to participating families, effectively doubling the funding available to provide early child education and care to the children of Florida’s working families in these communities.

A nod to "Throwback Thursday"...


In November 2002, Florida voters went to the polls and approved a Constitutional Amendment creating VPK.

Share your memories of how VPK began 10 years ago.


Have a special memory of VPK's early years? You're invited to share them.

Guess who's turning 10?


The first VPK classrooms opened their doors in 2005. Those first 4-year-olds are now in high school.

Three Florida early learning coalitions part of statewide pilot to focus on early childhood development.


The Early Learning Coalition of Manatee County is leading a new pilot program that will include Florida as the newest state in Save the Children's US network of programs. The organization will bring its Early Steps to School Success program to Manatee, Polk and Miami-Dade counties.

Governor Scott’s Florida First Budget Will Make Florida First for Early Childhood Education


Governor Rick Scott's proposed 2016-2017 budget continues to invest in early learning.

Guess who is turning 10? Find out in November's Early Learning Update.


Florida's VPK program started in 2005, and there are plenty of reasons to celebrate its 10 years of success.

New online course helps VPK teachers turn 4-year-olds on to math.


A new online course is available for instructors to teach students math at a young age.

New scholarships available for early childhood educators.


Early childhood educators interested in T.E.A.C.H. scholarships can now use the program to work toward a bachelor's degree in early childhood education.

Performance funding project proves valuable to child care providers and children


Second year of early learning performance funding pilot project gets underway as child care providers from first year receive checks.

Get your Early Learning Update for September 2015


Coalition news and a Performance Funding Project Pilot update.

Providers selected for 2015-16 Early Learning Performance Funding Pilot Project.


379 school readiness child care providers learned last week that they had been chosen to participate in the second year of the Early Learning Performance Funding Pilot Project.

The 2015 Back-to-School Guide


We've gathered together some helpful videos, articles and tips for parents with children entering preschool or kindergarten.

Early Learning Performance Funding Pilot Project gears up for 2015-16.


Last year, hundreds of child care providers participated in a first year pilot project to improve outcomes for children in the School Readiness Program. The pilot was such a success that it is being offered again this year.

Look for three ways to save money in July's Parents' Pages.


The July issue of Parent's Pages is full of information about your children's development and how to keep them healthy. Read these articles and more.

Florida early learning coalitions honor Florida Senator Bill Galvano.


The Association of Early Learning Coalitions has awarded the Honorable Senator Bill Galvano the “Early Learning Champion Award.”

A midsummer early learning update.


New changes and exciting transitions are making for a busy summer at the Office of Early Learning. Take a look at July's Early Learning Update.

Rodney MacKinnon named executive director of the Office of Early Learning.


After serving as interim executive director of the Office of Early Learning for seven months, Rodney J. MacKinnon has been named to fill the permanent position.

Early Learning Stakeholders Applaud Governor’s KEEP FLORIDA WORKING Budget


Governor Scott has signed into law the 2015-16 "KEEP FLORIDA WORKING" budget. Providing an historic total of $19.7 billion in funding for students, and a per-student spending increase of $207, early learning advocates across the state are applauding the Governor for his support of early child education and care.

New articles in Coalition News.


Early learning coalitions across the state work within their regions to serve young children, families and their children.

Ideas to honor dads, avoid the summer slide, have fun with grandparents, and more in June's Parents' Pages.


June's Parents' Pages has great ideas for dads not only for Father's Day but throughout the year along with tips to help your child avoid the summer slide and much more.

See how summer time can make learning easy and fun.


Summer is here and it is a good time for families to have fun and learn new things together. You'll find plenty of ideas in this list of summer activities.

Early learning welcomes the summer sun after a successful spring.


Coalitions across the state had a busy spring, and new community initiatives are underway in North Florida .

May 8, 2015, is Provider Appreciation Day.


The Office of Early Learning joins early learning coalitions, stakeholders and families to recognize the contributions of early learning providers throughout the state on Provider Appreciation Day.

Find out how to use gardening and parks to help young children learn naturally.


Learning doesn't have to be tedious. There are great ways to combine learning and outdoor activity. New apps help turn learning into fun, also.

Early learning impacts lives and pocketbooks according to researchers.


Nationally renowned early childhood education researchers were in Tallahassee March 26 and shared results from some of their studies with early learning staff and guests.

Florida preschoolers are moving in the right direction when it comes to healthier weights.


A recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows a 7.1 percent in obesity rates among preschool children from disadvantaged families in Florida.

See how grandparents can guide the way to early literacy.


How many children learn to read with the help of an encouraging grandparent? More than you might imagine. See how grands do it!

Spring forward and see what's happening in Tallahassee and around the state in early learning.


As the 2015 legislative session begins, look for possible new early learning legislation.

Cooperation among federal, state and local agencies leads to arrest for childcare benefits fraud in Miami.


An investigation involving federal, state and local officials led to the arrest of three people in Miami in a child care benefits-for-cash scheme.

See what Valentine's Day, music and birds have in common for children.


February brings Valentine's Day, the Great Backyard Bird Count and more activities for families with young children.

A new year for early learning success in Florida


We're starting the year off with good news for Florida's goal of becoming the top state in the nation for education.

Governor’s “KEEP FLORIDA WORKING” Budget Invests Over $1 Billion in Early Education for Florida’s Children


Governor Scott’s 2015-16 “KEEP FLORIDA WORKING” budget recommends $1.06 billion in funding for early child education and care, an increase of approximately $33.5 million. The proposed funding includes a $46 per-child increase in the base student allocation for VPK, $30 million for a statewide initiative to decrease the school readiness program waiting list, and money for teacher scholarships and training.

How to make family hopes and dreams real in 2015.


Reframing how you think about resolutions in 2015 may just help you achieve them!

OEL releases 2013-2014 Annual Report.


In 2013-2014, initiatives from the year before began culminating in more efficient governance, increased accountability, greater transparency and higher quality in early learning across Florida. House Bill 7165 became law and guided much of the work within the Office of Early Learning.

December is full of good news about early learning in Florida.


The December issue of Early Learning Update is full of highlights about early learning from coalitions and programs around the state.

October fraud report now available.


October's fraud report shows continued progress in ensuring Florida's investment in early learning is secure.

Helpful holiday tips and tactics for families with children from birth to 5.


While holidays can sometimes be hectic, there are ways to simplify them at the same time you're creating special memories and traditions. Read December's Parents' Pages for some tips.

Early literacy is a key to early learning. Celebrate Literacy Week!


Early learning providers join to celebrate early reading skills during Celebrate Literacy Week.

Read the November issues of Early Learning Update and OEL Tech News.


Check out the latest news about early learning around the state and read about the latest early learning technology news.

Practical tips for parenting newborns, toddlers and preschoolers


Parenting a newborn? Be flexible. A toddler? Be consistent. Read November's Parents' Pages for more tips.

School readiness providers selected for performance funding pilot.


The Office of Early Learning is in the process of notifying school readiness providers who have been selected to participate in the performance funding pilot project as part of the pilot or comparison groups.

Read the most recent fraud report from OEL's inspector general.


OEL Inspector General Rodney MacKinnon has issued the September fraud report.

More than 1,000 child care providers apply to be part of performance funding pilot.


More than 1,000 child care providers who offer school readiness have applied to be part of the Early Learning Performance Funding Pilot. Those selected will soon learn whether or not they will be part of the project.

Discover how to give your child a jump start in the years ahead.


Pediatricians have a new prescription for parents to give to their children to enhance language development and literacy skills: a daily dose of reading together.

Get ready to go back to school with these helpful tips!


Whether it's your child's first day of being in a school, preschool or child care setting or their first day back from a summer vacation, a little planning can help you and your child have a successful transition.

Student performance standards course for VPK instructors now available online


In less than two days, nearly 200 individuals have enrolled in a new online course for VPK instructors.

In Florida's pre-K program, a sign of bigger things to come


This August, Stacy Phillips of Pensacola, Fla. will see her daughter turn five and start her first day of kindergarten, enrolled in a mainstream class like other girls her age. A year ago, she didn’t think that would be possible. The situation changed, thanks to a special VPK program.

Governor Scott signs budget with increases in funding for VPK and school readiness


Early Learning: The It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget provides $396.1 million for the Voluntary Pre-K (VPK) program and increases funding by $54 per student, and $555.5 million for the School Readiness Program, including an increase of $3 million to further expand school readiness services. The budget includes $10.5 million for an early learning performance pilot program to award child care providers and instructors for improving quality.

OEL Inspector General issues fraud report for April


OEL Inspector General Rodney MacKinnon has issued his monthly fraud report.

Florida's focus on results affirms high quality of VPK program


An annual report by the National Institute for Early Education Research released today ranks Florida high in pre-K access, but lower according to their quality standards. Those "standards" do not include results of children who attend prekindergarten. Florida focuses on results, not benchmarks that may or may not impact an effective early learning experience.

Special VPK program makes a difference for a child


A relatively new VPK option for children with special needs proved to be just the ticket for one mom and her 4-year-old.

Governor Rick Scott highlights early learning at Academy of Science and Discovery in Panama City


Governor Rick Scott highlighted increased funding for early childhood education at the Science and Discovery Center of Northwest Florida. The Governor’s “It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget” proposes $1.1 billion in state funding for early childhood education and care. This is an increase of $59 million and the largest boost for early learning in the past decade.

Governor Rick Scott touts continued VPK gains among Florida's youth


Governor Rick Scott highlighted a report that shows for the fifth consecutive year Florida students who completed the Voluntary Prekindergarten (VPK) Education Program were better prepared for kindergarten than those who only attended part of the program or did not participate in VPK at all. Governor Scott’s 2014-15 “It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget” calls for investing more in VPK. This would be the first increase in the VPK student allocation in three years.

Governor's "It's Your Money Tax Cut Budget" invests in early learning


Hundreds of thousands of young children and families in Florida stand to benefit from Governor Rick Scott’s 2014-15 “It’s Your Money Tax Cut Budget.” Signaling his strong commitment to programs that support his top two priorities—education and jobs—the Governor is proposing $1.1 billion in state funding for early child education and care—an increase of $59 million.