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Jennifer Peck
Jennifer Peck was a founding staff member of the Partnership for Children and Youth in 2001 and became its executive director in 2003. Since that time, she has developed and implemented initiatives to finance and build after-school and summer-learning programs, and increase access to school meals and nutrition education programs in the Bay Area’s lowest-income communities.

Under her leadership, the Partnership has brought more than $70 million in public funding to schools and their community partners, enabling thousands of low-income children to participate in these programs, and has played an influential role in policy-development and advocacy to improve the effectiveness of public funding for youth programs in low-income communities across California.

In December 2010, Jennifer was appointed Senior Policy Advisor and Transition Team Director for Tom Torlakson, the newly-elected State Superintendent of Public Instruction. Jennifer also serves as Co-Chair of the West Contra Costa Public Education Fund, created the California Afterschool Advocacy Alliance, the state Legislative Task Force on Summer Enrichment, and leads a coalition of California organizations advocating for new federal policies to improve the effectiveness of after-school and summer-learning programs.

Prior to joining the Partnership, Jennifer spent eight years as an appointee of President Bill Clinton at the U.S. Department of Education, where she supported implementation of numerous initiatives including student loan reform, School-to-Work, and 21st Century Community Learning Centers.

Entries by Jennifer Peck

In Order for Our Kids to Keep Learning, We Need to Keep Learning Too

(0) Comments | Posted July 10, 2014 | 3:27 PM

How do we act on new information, when our systems and structures have been built on a foundation of incomplete or outdated information? How do we adjust what we've built in order to accommodate what we've learned?

It's a question faced by advocates for any issue -- and it's one...

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Congress' Chance to Help Students Get 21st Century Skills

(4) Comments | Posted July 22, 2013 | 5:10 PM

At the local level, it has become increasingly clear that as states, districts, and schools are raising standards and increasing their focus on graduating students that are prepared for college and careers, there is a need to build capacity within the education system. Many districts and schools have already begun...

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What We Know About Expanded Learning

(2) Comments | Posted April 18, 2013 | 12:32 PM

President Obama's 2014 budget proposes an increase to funding for expanded learning opportunities through the 21st Century Community Learning Centers (21st CCLC) grant program. This is an exciting step in the right direction for our low income children and youth, because we know, after decades of research, that the lack...

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Communities Hold the Answer to Student Success

(0) Comments | Posted April 3, 2013 | 3:19 PM

Given that school finance systems are often not designed to provide equitable opportunities for student learning and support, the Community School approach is an effective and efficient way to make the most of existing resources to meet a child's needs. Most importantly, this approach allows school districts and communities to...

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What the Sequester Will Do to California Summers

(0) Comments | Posted March 4, 2013 | 4:08 PM

For California schools, the consequences of the sequester mean broad spending cuts to public school systems that will hit low-income children the hardest. The cuts themselves are the same across the board, five percent of federal funding, and will dramatically reduce the amount available to government agencies including education. Because...

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Expanded Learning, California Style

(1) Comments | Posted February 22, 2013 | 2:11 PM

By Tom Torlakson, California State Superintendent of Public Instruction and Jennifer Peck, Executive Director, Partnership for Children and Youth

In 2002, California made a historic investment that forever changed the landscape of our education system. With the passage of Proposition 49, an unprecedented half a billion dollars was devoted to...

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This November, Learning Is on the Ballot

(0) Comments | Posted October 30, 2012 | 5:54 PM

When voters go to the polls next month, it's critical to know what's really at stake for our children's education.

Across the country, and here in California, if statewide and local school funding measures do not pass, it will result in shorter school years, longer summers, and even greater...

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Partnering for Common Core Success

(1) Comments | Posted October 16, 2012 | 4:01 PM

This week, the California STEM Learning Network will convene its annual California STEM Summit, bringing together leaders from education, business, philanthropy, academia, industry, government and nonprofits alike to catalyze STEM teaching and learning across the state and create a blueprint for how other states can follow suit.


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The House Takes a Step Backwards in the Effort to Expand Learning for All Students

(3) Comments | Posted March 6, 2012 | 11:52 AM

Expand learning opportunities -- it's a critical call that we hear everywhere from the White House to state capitols to the local schoolhouse. Students need more time for learning both inside and outside of the traditional school day. Parents want their children to be able to take advantage of academically...

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Summer Matters, Now

(1) Comments | Posted December 20, 2011 | 1:03 PM

Earlier this month, California State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson and dozens of school superintendents from across California gathered to talk about summer. The roundtable of education leaders discussed and strategized around ways that school districts can expand access to quality summer-learning programs in 2012.


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Time for Congress to Stand up for Expanded Learning

(1) Comments | Posted September 23, 2011 | 1:33 PM

This post is co-authored by Lucy N. Friedman, President, The After-School Corporation and Jennifer Peck, Executive Director, Partnership for Children and Youth.

Last week, Senators Lamar Alexander (R-TN), Johnny Isakson (R-GA), Richard Burr (R-NC) and Mark Kirk (R-IL) introduced five bills to...

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Changing the STEM Equation This Summer

(4) Comments | Posted August 3, 2011 | 5:23 PM

In California and around the U.S., the public, private, nonprofit and philanthropic sectors alike are investing resources and forging new partnerships to address America's glaring education crisis in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM).

Initiatives to bolster STEM education are becoming ubiquitous, with President Obama repeatedly emphasizing the critical...

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A New Exercise in Combatting Childhood Obesity: Summer Learning Programs

(1) Comments | Posted June 30, 2011 | 9:44 AM

This week in San Diego, thought leaders, policy makers and health experts are convening for the 6th Biennial Childhood Obesity Conference, the nation's largest collaboration of professionals dedicated to combating child obesity, to showcase the latest research, best practices and strategies toward reducing our country's ballooning childhood obesity...

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Celebrating National Summer Learning Day Every Day

(1) Comments | Posted June 21, 2011 | 12:59 PM

Most of us know June 21 as the longest day of the year and the first official day of summer.

But the 21 of June is also a call to action in support of our children and youth -- National Summer Learning Day, a nationwide celebration of the...

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Children Who Lose Out on Summer Learning, Lose Out

(22) Comments | Posted May 1, 2011 | 12:44 PM

While many families are planning summers filled with educationally enriching activities for their kids, the vast majority of low-income children in the U.S. lack access to fun and beneficial summer learning opportunities.

For these disadvantaged youth, summer months can be lonely and boring, and place them at increased risk for...

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