Mayor is champion of early-childhood education

Published 12:00 am Saturday, May 3, 2008

I would like to publicly thank Jim Councill, mayor of the City of Franklin, for his interest in and advocacy for young children and their future success in life. Moreover, I want to acknowledge his realization that supporting effective services for young children in this area is the key to economic vitality and success.

Recent research on brain development in young children indicates a child’s brain is 90 percent developed by age 5. It is the first five years of life that is so critical to the development of language, problem solving, social interaction, critical thinking and other abilities critical to the success of future leaders and a successful workforce.

Mayor Councill’s concern for our youngest citizens led him to develop an Early Childhood Education Council for the City of Franklin in the fall of 2006. This initiative has more recently expanded to include Southampton County and Isle of Wight County. Working together, the Smart Beginnings-Western Tidewater office was established. Mayor Councill’s early actions and vision have led to a steady path of improvement for the area’s youngest citizens.

Mayor Jim Councill has prompted an early investment in our children that may secure the future for our community. He has led our community to make a firm commitment to building our region’s capacity for a Smart Beginning for all children.

Martha N. Kello