Spring 2022

2022 Elections and Early Childhood Policymaking

Photo of 2022 Elections and Early Childhood Policymaking Research Presentation with POSC 395 Policy Research Internship students
Photo of 2022 Elections and Early Childhood Policymaking Research Presentation with POSC 395 Policy Research Internship students

For the Spring 2022 semester, our POSC 395 Policy Research Internship students identified and researched the key issues shaping several Los Angeles area elections. These elections included Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD) 2, Los Angeles County Supervisors, and Palmdale County elections. Students described the dynamics of the races and engaged with candidates and staff members in order to make recommendations about how best to elevate early childhood issues with candidates, the media, and voters during the upcoming general election. They presented their extensive research and recommendations to our partner, California Strategies.

Evanna Hasan, a freshman majoring in Business Administration, said this about her research experience: “As a policy research intern for California Strategies, a public affairs consulting firm, I focused on the upcoming Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors District 3 election. I interned alongside four USC students. I conducted research via interviews, where I spoke with representatives from the incumbent Supervisor’s office (namely Lisa Pinto, Supervisor Kuehl’s Child Welfare Deputy) and representatives from candidates running in the supervisorial election (i.e. Austin Cyr from Lindsey Horvath’s campaign). I used the research I gathered from scholarly sources, campaign sites, interviews I conducted, and beyond to propose two policy recommendations regarding the most effective methods to increase candidates’ awareness of early childhood education (ECE) and improve the ECE system itself for the children of Los Angeles County. Through my research, I learned about the impact of ECE with respect to underrepresented groups (i.e. racial minorities, the homeless population, etc.), the extent to which ECE is prioritized by politicians, and other related issues.”

Project: 2022 Elections and Early Childhood Policymaking

USC Students: Victoria Barrios, Chelsey Nguyen, Evanna Hasan, Isha Ceesay, and Connor Divelbiss

Research Question: How might we convince candidates in upcoming elections to prioritize early childhood education as a key issue in Los Angeles County and other surrounding counties?

Policy Recommendations for LAUSD:

  • Address and decrease access gaps in the District by reallocating budget post pandemic using the “SCF” formula.
  • Expand LAUSD ECE programs and allocate more funding to ECE.

Policy Recommendations for Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors:

  • Expand the “Emergency Child Care Bridge Program” to include homeless youth.
  • Establish new local (L.A. County based) welfare program that emulates CalWorks for families within this region at or below the poverty line.
  • Free universal pre-k program that operates on a full day program and is accessible to all families statewide.

Policy Recommendations for Palmdale County:

  • Highlight and bring to fruition early childhood education summer school programs through increased funding and commitment.
  • Increase training for teachers on important topics such as: disability, behavior, and post pandemic.

Read the group’s full research presentation.

Watch the video presentation on “2022 Elections and Early Childhood Policymaking.”