September 27, 2018

Congress Approves $260 Million Funding Increase for Federal Early Childhood Programs

Congress has approved a FY2019 “minibus” appropriations package that includes $260 million in increases to the federal early childhood education programs. In addition to a $200 million increase in funding for Head Start and Early Head Start, lawmakers voted to increase funding for the Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program by $50 million, building on the historic $2.37 billion increase the program received in FY2018 through a bipartisan deal made by House and Senate leaders.

The funding package approved also includes FY2019 funding for the Department of Defense, as well as a short-term Continuing Resolution to fund the rest of the government through December 7, 2018, was overwhelmingly approved in a 361-61 vote, and now awaits the president’s signature.

These increases will continue to support, expand upon, and prioritize our nation’s families and youngest learners.


FY2019 funding numbers as approved:

  • Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG)
    $5.3 billion — $50 million above FY2018
  • Early Head Start / Head Start
    $10.1 billion — $200 million above FY2018
  • Preschool Development Grants
    $250 million — Level with FY2018
  • Child Care Means Parents in School
    $50 million — Level with FY2018
  • IDEA Part B Preschool Grants
    $391.12 million — $10 million above FY2018
  • IDEA Part C Grants for Infants and Families
    $470 million — Level with FY2018

Read more online at: First Five Years Fund. 


City Proposes New Accessibility Legislation for Playgrounds

The City of Pittsburgh Office of Mayor William Peduto is proposing legislation that requires any new or renovated playgrounds to include at least one accessible swing according to the Americans with Disabilities (ADA), and at least one wheelchair-accessible swing where space allows.

The City has planned a total of 91 installments of Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA)-accessible swings and six wheelchair-accessible swings in 78 parks and playgrounds citywide.

Read the full press release and legislation online.


SOLD OUT – P.R.I.D.E Program Speaker Series

The P.R.I.D.E Program Speaker Series: Being Intentional About Race and Young Children is SOLD OUT!

As a part of the UnConference: Being Intentional about Race and Young Children, The P.R.I.D.E. Program Speaker Series will welcome Dr. Erin N. Winkler, professor of African & African Diaspora Studies and Urban Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, to discuss how adults can be intentional in discussing race with young children.

Thanks to all who have registered, we look forward to seeing you tonight.


September 21, 2018

Trying Together Introduces Social Media Policy

Today, Trying Together released a Social Media Policy. The purpose of this policy is to establish a set of guidelines for the public to address user expectations, guidelines, and appropriate conduct while engaging with page administrators and fellow fans and followers on Trying Together’s social networking platforms. Through this policy, Trying Together aims to ensure our social media communications build community and provide a space for respectful dialogue. Furthermore, we aim to maintain our brand, identity, and integrity.

Please take a moment to review our policy and follow us on our social media platforms:

If you have questions, please contact Maria Pisano, Director of Communications, by email: or by phone: 412.421.3889.


Play for Change Invites Team Registration

For many, play is something children do. It can however be a powerful connector for children, adults, and communities to interact with one another, make decisions, and solve problems. In partnership with the Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative and Philadelphia Playful Learning Landscapes, teams are invited to register for UnConference: Play for Change on Tuesday, October 30 at the Carnegie Museum of Art from 8 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.

25 teams of five to seven individuals from across Southwestern Pennaylvania and West Virginia will convene for this day-long event to think more critically about play. The event will include keynote speakers, lightning talks, hands-on activities, and time for action planning.

Registration is now closed. For questions, contact Yu-Ling at


September 20, 2018

Pre-K Open Enrollment Available with YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh

Pre-K open enrollment is now available with the YWCA of Greater Pittsburgh. With availability at the YWCA of Homewood-Brushton, and a new location at Propel Braddock Hills, apply now for high-quality, tuition-free early education through Pre-K Counts!

Applications are available at

For questions or more information, please contact: 412-361-3433.

Share this flyer with your networks. 


September 19, 2018

#PAbudget Funded Pre-K Expansions Recognized Locally

Policymakers from Butler and Westmoreland Counties joined Trying Together and other early-childhood advocates this week to celebrate a new pre-k grantee classroom and pre-k classroom expansion respectively. Both were made possible by the increased investment of $25 million for pre-kindergarten funding in the final 2018-19 state budget. To read more about both, see the articles below.


Ceremony Marks Expansion of Local Pre-K Programs (sharing via Butler Radio)

Advocates tout early education gains (sharing via Butler Eagle)

State grants bolster pre-kindergarten programs in Westmoreland County (sharing via Westmoreland Tribune-Review)

Statewide Voter Support

A poll commissioned by the Pre-K for PA campaign done by Harper Polling in May showed 75 percent of likely voters support increasing funding to expand access to high-quality, publicly funded pre-kindergarten, while 94 percent of voters believe that early education is important.

A large body of research shows that children who attend high-quality preschool:

  • Enter kindergarten with stronger literacy, language, math and social/emotional skills
  • Are less likely to need special education services, less likely to repeat grades, and more likely to graduate and enroll in college
  • Over a lifetime, these young learners will see stronger employment opportunities and increased earning potential
  • Are less likely to commit juvenile and adult crimes.

Still, more than 106,000 eligible children do not have access to high-quality, publicly funded pre-k due to limited state funding. This new classroom made possible by new state funding is a step in the right direction, but there is still much work to be done.

Pre-K for PA is an issue campaign supported by individuals and organizations across Pennsylvania who believe that investing in our children is the right choice and an urgent necessity. Our vision is that every 3- and 4-year-old in Pennsylvania will have access to high-quality pre-k. We will not endorse nor oppose candidates, but rather we will advocate on behalf of this vision for Pennsylvania’s children, schools and communities. For more information


September 18, 2018

Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative Revives Fun on the Northside

The Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative brought plenty of fun to the Northside this summer with “Playful Tuesdays at Gus and Yia Yia’s.” Despite the West Ohio Street bridge closure, they found a way to educate people of all ages on the importance of play at Allegheny Commons West Park.

Thanks to the support of the Northside Leadership Conference and the City, Playful Tuesdays became a way to revive the park and bring the community together. Each week included a variety music, history talks, and games such as giant Connect Four and large LEGO blocks.

Director of the Playful Pittsburgh Collaborative, Sarah Siplak, confirmed Playful Tuesdays will be back next summer. “Let’s bring people together. Let’s get people to play games together.”

Read the full article on the Northside Chronicle. 



September 13, 2018

transformED Fall 2018 Professional Development Dates

Join Remake Learning for “transformED Fall 2018 Professional Development” dates.

The Fall 2018 transformED calendar features over 30 professional learning opportunities for educators. Workshops are open to all educators—classroom teachers, out-of-school time providers, preservice teachers, etc.

Learn more and register online at

View the full schedule. 


September 11, 2018

Volunteer With Us In Your Neighborhood

Join Trying Together and the Pittsburgh Urban Magnet Project (PUMP) as we encourage our community to get out and vote YES for the Allegheny County Children’s Fund on the Nov. 6, 2018 General Election ballot.

We need your help! Volunteer as a canvasser in a local neighborhood, and help spread word about the importance of early learning, after school, and nutrition for all our kids.

We will be out canvassing on 9/22 and 9/26 in the 14th Ward (the East End, including parts of Squirrel Hill, Point Breeze and Frick Park).

Join us as we share the exciting news about Our kids. Our commitment. with our communities and remind people to vote YES on Nov. 6.

Find out more about canvassing dates and other ways to get involved.