Center hosts national Bounce Learning Network meeting


Having joined the distinguished Bounce Learning Network in the spring of 2008, the United Way Center for Excellence in Early Education and its Demonstration School, Educare of Miami-Dade, have become part of a national network of early care centers committed to continuously improving the quality of early care and education throughout the United States.

The Center was selected to host the Bounce Learning Network’s 2009 meeting focusing on multi-language acquisition. The meeting was a great success and featured prominent experts in the field of early childhood education such as Dr. Jacqueline Jones, newly appointed senior advisor to the secretary for early learning. In alignment with the Network meeting, United Way of Miami-Dade board members, senior management, and local and national Center volunteers joined leadership of the Bounce Learning Network and Dr. Jones for a candid conversation on early childhood education efforts nationwide. Also, a ribbon cutting ceremony in honor of the Center’s newly installed Educare icon, symbolizing its official entrance into the Network, took place. Those present included United Way of Miami-Dade board members Yolanda Berkowitz, Carolyn Donaldson, Laurie Jennings, Joe Natoli, and Harve Mogul in addition to Dr. Jones and Dan Pedersen, president of the Buffett Early Childhood Fund.

The multi-language acquisition focus of the meeting provided the Center with an opportunity to present a panel of language acquisition experts who spoke to the Network about strategies and future plans for our community in this arena. Collaborating organizations included Miami-Dade County Public Schools, University of Miami, and Nova Southeastern University.

The Ounce of Prevention Fund developed the first Educare school in 2000 to promote the school readiness and later success of impoverished young children in Chicago. The Buffett Early Childhood Fund built the second Educare school in Omaha, then partnered with the Ounce of Prevention Fund to create the nationwide Bounce Learning Network of Educare Centers. Eight Educare schools – in Chicago, Omaha, Milwaukee, Tulsa, Denver, Miami, Oklahoma City and Omaha– are serving young children and their families. Two Educare schools are under construction – Seattle and Central Maine as well as a second Educare in Tulsa at Hawthorne. At least three more Educare schools – in West DuPage, Yakima, and Arizona – are under developme