Connecting pre-k champions in Alabama

In 2011, the Alabama School Readiness Alliance formed the Pre-K Task Force to grow connections among existing pre-k champions and identify short- and long-term strategies to increase public investments in high-quality, voluntary pre-k in Alabama. The Pre-K Task Force is made up of prominent Alabama educators, business leaders, philanthropists, children’s advocates, and representatives from the military, medical and legal fields.

In 2012, the Pre-K Task Force kicked-off a ten-year campaign to expand our state's high quality, voluntary pre-kindergarten program to all families in Alabama. In the two years since the Pre-K Task Force recommendations were released, state leaders have doubled investments in the First Class Pre-K program.

2014 Legislative Update: The State Legislature approved and Governor Bentley signed into law an additional $10 million funding for Alabama's First Class Pre-K program during the upcoming academic year.  This amount is in addition to the $9.4 million additional funding approved last year.  Combined with prior budget levels, Alabama is now spending $38.5 million on high-quality, voluntary pre-k. This year’s additional funding will result in at least 100 additional pre-k classrooms serving approximately 1,800 children which would otherwise have not been able to attend a quality preschool program. 

Click Here to read the Pre-K Task Force's ten-year vision for pre-k expansion. 

Click Here to download the Pre-K Task Force's 2014 Legislative Recommendation.

Pre-K Task Force Members

Pre-K Task Force Co-Chairs
Mike Luce, President and COO, Harbert Management, Inc.
Bob Powers, President, The Eufaula Agency
ASRA Pre-K Task Force Members
Carolyn Akers, Executive Director, Mobile Area Education Foundation
Jeremy L. Arthur, President, Chamber of Commerce Association of Alabama
Florence Bellamy, Immediate Past President, Alabama Association of School Boards
Melanie Bridgeforth, Executive Director, VOICES for Alabama's Children
Billy Canary, President and CEO, Business Council of Alabama
Jeff Coleman, President and CEO, Coleman World Group
Charles Collat, Sr., Chairman Emeritus, Mayer Electric Supply
David Donaldson, Vice President, Governmental & Community Relations, Vulcan Materials Company
Gillian Goodrich, Trustee, Mike and Gillian Goodrich Charitable Foundation
Seth Hammett, Former Speaker of the Alabama House
Jim Hansen, Regional President Northern Alabama, The PNC Financial Services Group
Brian Hardin, Assistant Director, Governmental & Agricultural Programs, Alabama Farmers Federation
James Harrison, Jr., Chairman and CEO, Harco Drug, Retired
Sally Howell, Executive Director, Alabama Association of School Boards
Liz Huntley, Associate, Lightfoot Franklin & White, LLC
Johnny Johns, President and CEO, Protective Life
Tom Joiner, Geologist, Tom Joiner & Associates, Retired
Shelley Jones, Community Volunteer and Retired Elementary School Principal
Linda Lee, Executive Director, Alabama Chapter - American Academy of Pediatrics
Drew Langloh, President, United Way of Central Alabama
Barbara Larson, Executive Director, Leadership Alabama
Jay Love, Former State Representative; Co-Chair, Business Education Alliance
Frank “Trippy” McGuire, District Judge, Covington County
Sue McInnish, Executive Director, Alabama Civil Justice Foundation
Joe Morton, Former State Superintendent of Education, Co-Chair, Business Education Alliance
Caroline Novak, President, A+ Education Partnership
Major General Butch Pair, US Army, Retired
Jim Page, President and CEO, Tuscaloosa Chamber of Commerce
Gail Piggott, Executive Director, Alabama Partnership for Children
Barry Sadler, Retired Superintendent, Eufaula City Schools
Kristina Scott, Executive Director, Alabama Possible
Ann Sikes, Executive Director, Montgomery Education Foundation
Taylor Simmons, Director of Workforce Readiness, Decatur-Morgan County Chamber of Commerce
Zeke Smith, Executive Vice President, Alabama Power Company
Christie Steigerwald, Owner, Kid Plus Learning Center, Foley
Jera Stribling, Executive Director, Joseph S. Bruno Charitable Foundation
Linda Tilly, Retired children's advocate, Montgomery
Lissa Tucker, Director of Governmental Relations, Alabama Association of School Boards
Casey Wardynski, Superintendent, Huntsville City Schools
Leila Watson, Attorney, Cory, Watson, Crowder & DeGaris
James C. Wiley, MD, FAAP, Immediate Past President, Alabama
Chapter-American Academy of Pediatrics & Founder of FOCUS Clinic, Mobile