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The Early Childhood Investment Corporation today launches a new online publication called “Great Starts Here.”The electronic magazine, available quarterly, will spotlight the vital work of ECIC and Great Start, Michigan’s nationally recognized statewide initiative to foster school readiness and life success for young children. View it here.

LANSING - Star Power 2011 was a huge success, and statewide media took notice. Below are links to some of the coverage:

LANSING - More than 4,300 parents, children and community leaders from across the state braved the rain today for a chance to talk to their lawmakers during the fifth annual Star Power 2011 event on the lawn of the state Capitol.

The gathering was the largest Star Power since the event began in 2007. More than 3,500 people attended the 2010 event, which is annually one of the biggest citizen gatherings on the Capitol lawn.

LANSING – At one of the largest annual citizen gatherings at the state Capitol, the Ionia County Great Start Parent Coalition today was named the state’s top “Fierce Heart” organization for young children by the Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC).

LANSING – At one of the largest annual citizen gatherings at the state Capitol, Jennifer Rees of Kent County’s Great Start Parent Coalition today was named the state’s top “Fierce Heart” for young children by the Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC).

SHIAWASSEE COUNTY – Jessica Bostwick was fed up with people driving around with children who weren’t secured in car seats. So, she decided to do something about it. Bostwick, a parent facilitator with the Shiawassee County Great Start Coalition, contacted Lori Noyer, co-coordinator of the county’s Great Start Collaborative, and together they cooked up a plan of action.

WAYNE COUNTY - Children who receive Medicaid health insurance coverage haven’t always had the best access to doctors and medical care – largely because the public insurer doesn’t begin to cover physician expenses like private companies.

LANSING – The Early Childhood Investment Corp. (ECIC) today announced that 30 Great Start Collaboratives across the state have been awarded a total of $2.8 million in grants to stimulate private investment in local early childhood efforts and to pay for child care/preschool scholarships for vulnerable 3-year-olds.

Tuesday, May 3rd was Children's Mental Health Awareness Day nationally. David Murphey, a senior research scientist, wrote an interesting article for the research blog "Trend Lines," about how parental depression is an often "silent" threat to children's mental health.

LANSING - Five months after taking office, Gov. Rick Snyder is fundamentally changing how Michigan will be approaching public education, including more intense focus on the years that are pivotal to school readiness.

TRAVERSE CITY – When state funding cuts eliminated the Child Care Enhancement Program that offered mental health services for infants and toddlers last year, the Great Start Traverse Bay/Manistee Collaborative did what it was designed to do.

DETROIT - At a press conference in Detroit today, Gov. Rick Snyder announced his intent to issue an executive order creating an Office of Great Start to coordinate the state's early childhood efforts.  (Story updated with reactions, media coverage and the governor's letter to the Legislature.)

LANSING - Gov. Rick Snyder is expected to push for more public-private education partnerships during an education summit speech Wednesday morning in Detroit. A Detroit News report Tuesday said the governor will speak from the Detroit office of the United Way of Southeastern Michigan.

LANSING - The agenda for Star Power - one of the largest annual gatherings of constituents at the state Capitol - is firming up. The May 19 event is expected to draw more than 3,500 parents, children and early childhood advocates to the Capitol to talk with lawmakers.

LANSING - The House Department of Human Services appropriations subcommittee approved a budget proposal Wednesday, April 14, that would cut $750,000 from the Early Childhood Investment Corporation, according to a report by the Gongwer news agency.

The one-hour special "The Time is Now" debuted this week on public television channels all over Michigan. The video explores the relationship between investment in early childhood, workforce development and overrall economic well-being. Click here to view it.

A new study by the Annie E. Casey Foundation says children who can't read well by third grade are more likely to drop out of school or not finish high school. That rate is four times greater than for proficient readers.

LANSING - National Child Abuse Prevention Month activities in Michigan kick off with a Prevention Awareness Day at the state Capitol Tuesday, April 12. The event, which begins at 11 a.m., will combine the education efforts of Legislative Education Day with the planting of a pinwheel garden on the Capitol grounds in support of child abuse prevention.

LANSING – Michigan’s Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC), Detroit Public Television (DPTV) and United Way for Southeastern Michigan today announce a first-of-its-kind partnership designed to use the power of media to help prepare more Michigan pre-school age children for success in the classroom.

LANSING  — Noting that Michigan taxpayers are spending nearly $2 billion a year on corrections, local law enforcement leaders were joined today by the Ingham Great Start Collaborative(GSC) as they called on state and federal lawmakers to support high-quality early education as a critical strategy to reduce crime, lower prison costs, and save taxpayers money.