'Summit on Children' Moves Forward

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By: Edan Schultz
April 14, 2015

Tallahassee -- A plan to improve the lives of children will move forward this week. It stems from a summit convened by mayor Andrew Gillum last month.

Friday, April 17, the mayor's office will name the members of four new committees charged with studying children's issues in Tallahassee.

The committees were formed after the mayor's 'Summit on Children' in late March, which brought together dozens of state and local leaders to discuss investing in kids.

The mayor says the goal is to put more resources into children ages 0-5, critical years for development.

Gillum believes that will pay off by lowering community costs on those children as they grow older.

"For every dollar that is put into early childhood education on average the city, the community, the individual taxpayers get six dollars on the back end. You only need one dollar in and one dollar out to make it a worthy investment. One dollar in and six dollars out? It's a no-brainer," Gillum said.

The four committees will get seven months to meet and put together action plans.

Their areas of study will be family friendly workplaces, greater community investment in kids, training for parents and families, and affordable quality childcare.

Mayor Gillum says Tallahassee has looked to other communities for inspiration, but must come up with its own plan to meet the city's unique needs.

The mayor says each committee will have about 25 members.

Those committees are expected to hold their first meetings in the coming weeks.

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