SEATTLE/SOUTH KING COUNTY – The Seattle Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce has announced its decision to join the Cradle Through College Coalition, adding its voice to the call for the Legislature to invest in each stage of education. The coalition includes leaders from early learning, K-12 and higher education as well as numerous youth and family services organizations. The Chamber, a membership organization representing over 2,200 businesses in the Puget Sound region, is the first business organization to join the coalition.
“All kids in our state should be able to get good jobs at local companies when they graduate. That means they need affordable access not only to kindergarten through 12th grade – our state legislators must also invest in early learning and postsecondary education so that kids from all backgrounds have opportunities that pay off in the long term. In particular, we have to make sure that we’re not losing anyone along the way, especially children of color or those from low-income families, who aren’t always being well-served by our current system,” said Chamber President and CEO Maud Daudon.
The Seattle Metro Chamber joins institutions such as the Seattle College system, University of Washington, Washington State University, Bellevue College, Western Washington University, numerous South King County K-12 school districts, United Way of King County, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Puget Sound, Children’s Alliance and YMCA of Greater Seattle. The Road Map Project has partnered with the Equity in Education Coalition, League of Education Voters and OneAmerica to help form the Cradle Through College Coalition. To see the full list of supporters, please visit www.c2ccoalition.org.
Mary Jean Ryan, executive director of the Community Center for Education Results, the organization supporting the Road Map Project, said, “We are very pleased to have the support of the Chamber. To see groups who do not usually advocate together join forces to fight for the young people of our state is inspiring!”
The coalition believes it is time to break from “business as usual” and approach education funding as a whole system. Furthermore, it is focused on ensuring that progress on the McCleary lawsuit should be measured by our state’s ability to provide opportunity for every student, and that new investments must spur dramatic improvements in student achievement that close the unacceptable opportunity gaps for low-income students and students of color.
The Cradle Through College Coalition was announced publicly in December 2014. Currently, about 85 organizations and coalitions have agreed to support the coalition’s principles.
The four core principles in the cradle-through-college state investment strategy are:
- State investments must be made cradle through college
- The State must require strong accountability for results
- The State must encourage innovation and spread of best practices
- Additional funding is needed
To read the full document or to join the coalition, please visit www.c2ccoalition.org.
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