For the third consecutive year, Santa Cruz County School Superintendent Mr. Alfredo I. Velasquez and his office are collaborating with First Things First, The U of A Cooperative Extension Santa Cruz County, and the Nogales/Santa Cruz Libraries to increase awareness about the importance of Early Childhood Education in Santa Cruz County. Research shows that the quality of a child’s experiences in their first five years helps shape how their brain develops and 90% of a child’s brain develops before they start kindergarten.
Kids with positive, stable relationships with parents and caregivers, as well as quality child care and preschool experiences, go on to do better in school and in life. When parents and communities begin to value the importance of Early Childhood Education, together they can make an impact on individual outcomes for children which in turn makes a positive impact on our education system and greater community.
During the month of February, Santa Cruz County will officially proclaim February as Early Childhood Education Awareness Month in order to highlight its importance. Some of the sponsored events during February, in partnership with Santa Cruz County School Superintendent’s Office, include the 8th Annual First Things First Celebrates the Young Child Community Event, Read On Preschools, and Early Childhood Legislation Day. Additionally, the Nogales, Rio Rico, Tubac and Sonoita public libraries will have story time along with other activities. The Nogales-Santa Cruz County Chamber of Commerce will receive a presentation centered on the importance of early literacy in young children. Lastly, due to the importance of recognizing the people who work with the children before entering Kindergarten, The Nogales Rotary Club will host a luncheon to celebrate the Early Childhood Excellence Awards in our community.
For more information regarding this countywide initiative, and how you can support our youth, and/or get involved with Early Childhood Education Awareness Month you may contact Chris Young, Chief Deputy at the Santa Cruz County School Superintendent’s Office at 375-7940 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may contact Jennifer Argyros, the Program Director at the Family Resource Centers at 520-397-7334 or email at email@example.com. You may contact Francisco Padilla, First Things First Santa Cruz Regional Director at 520-761-3012 or email at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also contact Dantiza Lopez, Nogales/Santa Cruz County Library Director at 520 287 4823 at email email@example.com.