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[ Recorded presentation ] Recorded presentation

From Neurons to King County Neighborhoods: From policy agenda to action for early childhood development and school readiness

Kathryn J. Horsley, DrPH, Epidemiology, Planning and Evaluation, Public Health-Seattle & King County, Wells Fargo Center, Suite 1200, 999 Third Avenue, Seattle, WA 98104, 206 296-2789, kathryn.horsley@metrokc.gov and Sandy Ciske, MN, MPH, Epidemiology, Planning and Evaluation Unit, Public Health: Seattle & King County, 999 - 3rd Ave., Suite 1200, Seattle, WA 98104.

Public Health-Seattle & King County initiated a partnership with local and state public and private stakeholders concerned with early childhood development. Partnership goals were to: 1) build a policy agenda informed by science that focuses on environmental-level influences on early childhood; 2) prioritize policies and identify opportunities to move policies in a positive direction; and; 3) use population-level school readiness assessment results to convene neighborhood/school district early childhood development stakeholders to mobilize actions that are informed by the school readiness scores. Partners reviewed the science, specifically the research summarized in the Institute of Medicine report, From Neurons to Neighborhoods, and then generated a policy action agenda based on the science. Fourteen key policies emerged as the basis of a policy agenda that was distributed widely to legislators, legislative staff, agency directors and planners, educators, and community activists. Public Health—Seattle & King County monitored the status of the policy agenda and reconvened the partners in order to reexamine and further prioritize those chosen for concerted action. A system of assessing school readiness at the community level was initiated with a pilot survey of kindergarten teachers in two of the county’s 19 school districts. The purpose was to map school readiness at the neighborhood level in order to identify the influence of socioeconomic and community factors on child development. The maps were used to convene stakeholders to monitor early child development, and to create effective community-based responses that support the needs of children and families in their communities.

Learning Objectives:

Keywords: Community-Based Partnership, Policy/Policy Development

Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I do not have any significant financial interest/arrangement or affiliation with any organization/institution whose products or services are being discussed in this session.

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The 132nd Annual Meeting (November 6-10, 2004) of APHA