Dear Friends and Colleagues,
I have spent the past year under the tutelage of our now past president, Cheri Lindsley, to learn about the inner workings of the TAEYC board. I have been fully immersed the first six weeks with selection of board members for our organization with the intention of having state wide representation of you, our members, as we work together to best support our community of educators of our most precious resource, our children. I so look forward to the next two years as we journey together to continue our work towards reaching potential together.
Our work is more important than ever as the national spotlight shines on access to quality early childhood education for all children. In the Tennessee department of education we have a motto that simply says “all means all” and this certainly applies to our youngest learners as well as those in the K-12 educational system. Access to quality care should not be based on the affluence of a child’s family or the lack there of. Every child deserves access to quality educational programs, as well as health and mental services to live out their dream and become whatever they want to become.
This “dream” requires all of us to work together. We cannot do it alone and being a member of TAEYC, SECA and your local affiliate or chapter, provides you with access to resources and training opportunities to strengthen your understanding and working knowledge of early childhood. The more we know the easier our job becomes and the more satisfied we are with our job.
Staying informed and involved with national, regional, state and local organizations is key to improving our job satisfaction. There are many changes occurring to your membership at all levels, including national [National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC)] and regional [Southern Early Childhood Alliance (SECA)], which will impact your membership at both the state level [TN Association for the Education of Young Children (TAEYC)] and your local affiliate or chapter level. At our winter state board meeting on February 26th, the executive board presented a motion to the full board to seek affiliation with SECA and to defer affiliation with TAEYC at this time. This change becomes effective in January 2017. We will keep all of you informed of the changes as we develop our plan on how to best support all members. As a member of your local affiliate I encourage you to check in with your local organization to participate in the discussion and have your voice heard.
Decisions resulting in change are never easy. Keeping positive, open, working relationships as central to all decisions as we focus on our work to support you, the educators, and the children you serve, will make these changes easier. The executive board is meeting with SECA the first part of April and we will share the outcomes of this meetings with all members. These decisions will allow us to move forward to determine next best steps for our members.
I look forward to talking with many of you as I am able to attend your affiliate spring conferences or events. Until then, strive to provide the quality care you would want for your own children or grandchildren. You are shaping the future of our teachers, home health nurses, beauticians, police officers, doctors, lawyers, garbage collectors, exterminators, astronauts, veterinarians, CEOs, etc.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or requests for support.