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Birth to Five Policy Alliance Changes Name to Reflect Expanded Focus

The Birth to Five Policy Alliance, an eight-year-old organization that has brought together major education philanthropies with the goal of supporting early-childhood policies, has rebranded itself as the Alliance for Early Success.

With the new name comes a renewed focus on children from birth to age 8, said Lisa Klein, the organization's executive director. Child-development experts recognize that period as being an important time for growth and development at an "incredibly rapid pace," she said.

In addition, research shows that children who are on a path for success by age 8—usually the end of 3rd grade for most children, Klein said—have higher rates of high school graduation and college completion.

"We want to work on getting children successful and keeping them successful," Klein said.

The Birth to Five Policy Alliance was formed in 2005 with an investment from the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, whose chairwoman, Susan A. Buffett, is the daughter of famed investor Warren Buffett. The Alliance was incorporated as an independent organization in 2008. Eight investors currently pay for the organization's $7 million yearly budget, including the Buffett Early Childhood Fund, the W.K. Kellogg Foundation, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. (The Gates Foundation provides support for Education Week's coverage of business and industry.)

The organization plans to continue its work providing direct grants to states and technical assistance, and will look for additional partnerships to bolster its work with older children, Klein said. The organization also recently released a birth through age 8 state policy framework that it hopes lawmakers and others will draw on when advocating on behalf of programs affecting young children.

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