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2006 Conference: Building the Economic Case for Investments in Preschool

CED, The Pew Charitable Trusts, and PNC Financial Services, Inc. sponsored an all-day forum, "Building the Economic Case for Investments in Preschool." Over 200 business leaders and education experts came together to discuss progress in local, state, and national efforts to establish universal, quality pre-kindergarten for all American children. Research shows that high-quality preschool offers long-term economic payoffs and near-term savings. The results of a new poll of business leaders by Zogby International on early education issues were released at the conference. The poll found that American business leaders overwhelmingly back public funding for pre-kindergarten for all children to keep the U.S. economy globally competitive.

The New York conference featured many of the top early childhood experts in the world, including: James J. Heckman, Nobel Prize-winning economist; James E. Rohr, Chairman and CEO, The PNC Financial Services Group, Inc.; Rebecca W. Rimel, President and CEO, The Pew Charitable Trusts; Sandra Pianalto, President and CEO, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland; Beverley Hughes, Minister of State (Children, Young People and Families) for Great Britain; Philip Murphy, Senior Director, The Goldman Sachs Group; Rob Dugger, Managing Director, Tudor Investments, Inc.; and Doug Price, Managing Director, Benjamin Douglas Companies.

The conference attendees represented 26 states and the District of Columbia. Also in attendance was a delegation of 24 from the United Kingdom. Of the 230 participants, well over 100 were business representatives. The majority of the other attendees represented foundations, universities, and think tanks. To seize the momentum from the conference, CED will be mailing out follow up surveys and video segments from the various panels and keynote remarks to make the message of universal preschool for all available to a larger audience.

Following the conference, CED, the PNC Financial Services Group, and the Pew Charitable Trusts were pleased with media coverage that included: The New York Times, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, The Wall Street Journal, The Journal News, and The Cleveland Plain Dealer.