A statement from our Executive Director, Carmen Rubio:
The Oregon Legislature just passed a $2 billion dollar investment in education that includes $20 million for the Early Childhood Equity Fund and $1 million for the Latino Student Success Plan. Now, the Student Success Act is headed to the Governor for her final signature.
These bills will allow Latino Network’s Advocacy and Early Childhood teams to transform the lives of Latino families across Oregon. The Early Childhood Equity Fund will give the state the necessary resources to invest in culturally-specific early childhood programs, such as Juntos Aprendemos.
Through Juntos Aprendemos, 3-5 year olds and their parents are equipped with the early literacy and school readiness skills needed to overcome barriers facing Spanish-speaking children in our community. By allowing programs like Juntos Aprendemos to thrive, the opportunity gaps experienced by children of color will be narrowed and our ever-growing communities will be enabled and encouraged to self-determine their future.
None of this would have been possible without the constant support of our staff and parents who advocated for this bill in Salem. I would like to thank the youth leaders from our Latino Student Action Committee who also advocated for the Latino Student Success Act and demanded the state of Oregon to create a strategy to improve graduation rates and remove historic barriers affecting Latino students.
I’d like to thank our Advocacy and Early Childhood teams for their arduous work and leadership in securing these great victories for our community. We also thank our community partners for working with us on this effort that will impact current and future generations of children in the state.