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Early Education Matters (2018)

Louisiana Public Square



Genre: Panel

Place Covered: Louisiana

Copyright Holder: Louisiana Educational Television Authority

Date Issued: 2018-01-24

Duration: 00:57:25

Subjects: Filmed panel discussions | Child Care | Early childhood education


  • Erwin, Barry Host
  • Gautreaux, Kevin Producer
  • Jefferson, Shawanda Interviewee
  • George, Melinda Interviewee
  • Nieland, Brigitte Interviewee
  • Davis, Belinda Creel Interviewee
  • Carmouche, Theresa Speaker
  • Slan, Danielle Speaker
  • Smith, Trevor Speaker
  • Minton, William Speaker
  • Berthelot, Sarah Speaker
  • Bishop, Cindy Speaker
  • Davis, Tony Speaker
  • Kuster, Erin Speaker
  • Wiggins, Judy Speaker
  • Smith, Candice Speaker
  • Emery, Tara Speaker
  • Ross, Jan Speaker
  • Donovan, Jeanie Speaker


This episode of the series “Louisiana Public Square” from January 24, 2018, features Barry Erwin leading a discussion between the audience members and panelists on the issues of child care and early childhood education in Louisiana. A background report on the topic precedes the discussion. It includes interviews with: Shawanda Jefferson, a working parent; Melinda George of the Louisiana Department of Education; Brigitte Nieland of the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry; and Dr. Belinda Creel Davis of the LSU Public Policy Research Lab. The audience members then discuss the child care issues facing Louisiana families and child care providers. A panel of experts then joins the audience to answer their questions. The panelists are: Louisiana State Superintendent of Education John White; Stephen Waguespack, the president of the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI); Melanie Bronfin, the executive director of the Louisiana Policy Institute for Children; and State Representative Steve Carter. They discuss: the need to make early childhood education and child care a priority for state funding; how to incentivize employers to provide more child care support for their employees; the waiting list for state child care assistance; and the services available for children with special needs.