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DC Action for Children is a nonprofit, nonpartisan child and youth advocacy organization dedicated to using data, public policy, and partnerships with a lens toward race equity to break down barriers that stand in the way of all kids reaching their full potential.

DC Action is the home of DC Kids Count, Under 3 DC, DC Out-of-School Time Coalition, and the DC Home Visiting Council.

Our collaborative advocacy campaigns and initiatives empower young people and all residents to raise their voices to create change.


What's New?


Reflections on the year- 2011

Anyone who lives in D.C. will probably agree that we work at an above-average pace. Luckily, everything slows down (at least slightly) at the end of the year – long enough for us to take the time to reflect on what we have accomplished. This reflection is important, so I've taken the time to compile some of DC Action's accomplishments...

Not the Naughty or Nice List but the Wait List

In October, Voices for America’s Children sent a petition to Congress demanding that childcare be a priority. Based on a report from the National Women’s Law Center, State Child Care Assistance Policies 2011: Reduced Support for Families in Challenging Times, Voices incorporated one of their distinct infographics to illustrate the growing number of children on waiting lists around the country.Based...

New charter rankings answer some questions, raise others

Not all public charter schools are equal, something we know already, but new rankings confirm that. On December 6, the D.C. Public Charter School Board released a rating system that shows a portion of outstanding schools and another share below par, with the rest falling somewhere in the middle. The ratings put charters into three tiers, based on a number...

New leadership for D.C.’s child welfare system

DC Action welcomes Brenda Donald back to the District, as she takes the reigns of the Child and Family Services Agency (CFSA). Today, Mayor Vincent Gray appointed Ms. Donald as CFSA Director, where she will have responsibility for D.C.’s child welfare system. Acknowledging the need for collaboration to improve outcomes for vulnerable children and families, she said, “CFSA is an...

Our New Year's Resolution: A Better Future for Our Children

Season’s Greetings!For many of us, the holiday season is about giving and the good feelings we share when we do something for others. We hope you will keep DC Action on your giving list this year.Across D.C., too many young children and youth are suffering from the effects of the deep recession – and they need our help. Your support...

Creating “good and responsible world citizens”

In recent months, DC Action staff members have been fortunate enough to participate in “First Fridays”, sponsored by Charter Board Partners, CityBridge Foundation, and Friends of Choice in Urban Schools (FOCUS). The first Friday of each month, community members and advocates are invited to tour successful charter school models around the District. While this was only my second tour, the...

World AIDS Day: A Local Perspective

In honor of World AIDS Day, here are a few ways HIV/AIDS is affecting children and youth in the District.HIV/AIDS rates for children and youth in DC are relatively low compared to other age groups in the city, but the trends are not comforting. According to two recent reports by the DC Department of Health (links are here and here):•...

Lunch lines grow across the country, and in D.C.

More students than ever are receiving free and reduced price lunches, The New York Times reports today, a result of their parents falling on hard times. The number of students receiving subsidized lunches nationwide has grown by 17% since last year, as more families find their middle class status slipping due to the recession and tight job market. In D.C.’s...

DC and youth: we talk the talk, but can we walk the walk?

Back in March I attended a briefing at Brookings on strengthening educational and career pathways for youth in DC (read our Policy Analyst Kate Kairys’s blog on it here). I remember being stunned by the data on low high school graduation rates and high unemployment. Today I was reminded of what is turning into a crisis here in the District.Martha...

Thanksgiving 2011- what are you thankful for this year?

As we move into this hectic holiday season, children, youth and their families across the District are reflecting upon what they have to be thankful for: health, happiness and opportunities. In the spirit of gratitude, we would like to take a moment to thank our fellow advocates, educators, community leaders and parents for their unwavering commitment to the District's children...

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