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We're shaping fair and equitable public policy for all of DC's children and youth to grow up safe, resilient, powerful, and heard.

With the support of individuals and private foundations, DC Action for Children uses research, data, and a lens toward race equity to break down barriers that stand in the way of all kids reaching their full potential. Our collaborative advocacy campaigns empower young people and all residents to raise their voices to create change.


What's New?


NPR on universal preschool in France

In case you missed it, NPR had a great piece on today's Morning Edition about universal preschool in France. Here's the audio link . As the Obama administration looks to promote preschool for every child in the U.S., it's instructive to hear how other countries in Europe have managed to do it. France has a longstanding commitment to preschool for...

PreK-3rd strategies: Building on success

One of our goals with "Little Citizens, Big Issues" is to showcase diverse voices and viewpoints from the community on issues affecting young children in the District. This post is by Lauren Hogan, director of public policy at the National Black Child Development Institute . When the D.C. Council passed the PreK Enhancement and Expansion Act in July 2008, it...

Introducing the D.C. Healthy Schools Act

One of our goals with "Little Citizens, Big Issues" is to showcase diverse voices and viewpoints from the community on issues affecting young children in the District. This post is by Kristin Roberts, community nutrition association at D.C. Hunger Solutions . Momentum is building in Congress to expand funding for childhood nutrition programs to ensure that low-income children have access...

Help shape D.C.'s Early Childhood Advisory Council

In the District, as in many states, child care, pre-kindergarten, special education services, Early Head Start, Head Start and early intervention operate in separate programmatic and policy silos, each with myriad—even conflicting—objectives and funding streams. The consequence is uncoordinated early childhood policy, which can often degrade access, quality and the return on investment of such programs. I can’t tell you...

What does "quality" preschool mean in D.C.?

One of our goals with "Little Citizens, Big Issues" is to showcase diverse voices and viewpoints from the community on issues affecting young children in the District. This post is by Jack McCarthy, managing director of AppleTree Institute for Education Innovation. In Washington, D.C., two of every three babies are born to single mothers who live in poverty. That’s more...

What does effective teaching look like in preschool?

There's a lot of talk--and policy--these days directed at fostering "effective teaching" to boost student achievement. You would think there was a common definition of effective teaching, or an agreed upon way to determine which qualities and approaches make teachers effective, but so far it has proven elusive. Even how to measure effective teaching is a subject of great debate....

President Obama launches fatherhood initiative at THEARC in Southeast

Happy belated Father's Day to all the dads out there. President Obama will be heading over to the THEARC arts and recreation center in Southeast today to announce the creation of his Fatherhood and Mentoring Initiative, an effort that will be central to the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships. The administration will embark on a six-city listening...

Lead in D.C.'s water? Who's watching out for our children?

As a parent of young children in the District, I was mortified to read in the Pos t this week that there's still potentially dangerous levels of lead in our water! (" Congressional panel finds possible lead risk in some D.C. children's water .") Here’s the information I found about children and lead on the on the EPA's website ....

What does increasing diversity mean for our future?

One of our goals with "Little Citizens, Big Issues" is to showcase diverse voices and viewpoints from the community on issues affecting young children in the District. This is the first in a series of guest posts by one of our partner organizations, the National Black Child Development Institute. Big issues require big solutions, huge conversations, and enormous action. Our...

DC Action For Children's radio debut

Gloria Minott of WPFW-89.3 FM interviewed our Executive Director HyeSook Chung on this morning's MetroWatch report. HyeSook talked about the critical need for quality early care and education in the District and about the grant we just received from the Kellogg Foundation. You can hear the report by going to the station's online archive and selecting story #44.

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We need you.

Despite a booming economy, the District has one of the highest child poverty rates in the country, with more than one quarter of children and youth living in families struggling to make ends meet. Let's work together to break down structural barriers that stand in the way of all kids reaching their full potential.  Join Us!