5 Powerful CounciLIVE Quotes All Educators Should Hear

September 22, 2021

CounciLIVE launched this June, and since then its featured speakers have stirred audience members to grow in every aspect of their ECE careers. Our great lineup of early childhood experts has challenged us all to reflect, advocate and learn from their wisdom and wonderful words. Looking back on what we’ve heard so far, these 5 quotes struck us as the most vigorous calls to action for our community—and we know they’ll inspire you, too.

1. “What makes the world so exciting is DIFFERENCES. So, we need to start honoring these differences, and make sure we embrace and celebrate them in our daily activities with children and families.”—Dr. Bisa Batten Lewis, National Black Child Development Institute-Atlanta Affiliate & WINGS Curriculum

Listen to “Creating a Culturally Responsive ECE Workforce,” a conversation with Dr. Bisa Batten Lewis and Sandra Kowalchek (Council for Professional Recognition, Manager of Government Relations).




2. “When we talk about the opportunity gap, it’s not a gap in skills or potential. It’s a gap in the systems or opportunities that kids have access to. So, if we got rid of those gaps in opportunity and everyone had opportunity and resources and positive experiences, then we wouldn’t have an achievement gap. It’s a shift in focus from the child to the system. Our kids aren’t broken, our systems are broken. So, homing in on how we can improve the system and distribute opportunity equitably is where the focus needs to be.”—Dr. Shantel Meek, Children’s Equity Project

Listen to “Building Equity in ECE,” a conversation with Dr. Shantel Meek and Michelle Brown (Council for Professional Recognition, Executive VP, Programs Division).




3. “Self-reflection is a part of my daily routine. In order for us to be intentional, we have to self-reflect every day. And we have to self-reflect on three key areas. As teachers, we can have our lesson plans for the week and materials ready, but your plan doesn’t always work out the way you thought it would. You need to reflect daily on: (1) What worked, and how did you play a role in that? (2) What did not work, and how did you play a role in that? (3) What could have been better, and how did you play a role in that? I don’t believe you can grow if you don’t self-reflect. We grow if we reflect each day.”—Dr. Cindy Shackelford, Department Chair, Jefferson State Community College

Listen to “What is ECE Professionalism?,” a conversation with Dr. Cindy Shackelford and Abena Ocran-Jackson (Council for Professional Recognition, VP of Credentialing).




4. “My passion for this work is really rooted in social justice, my undying love for language, belief that every child deserves the right to decide their own future—and realizing that anything less than that is criminal and unjust. We are facing an illiteracy epidemic, and this is not new.”—Dr. Ryan Lee-James, Rollins Center for Language & Literacy

Listen to “Literacy & Equity in ECE,” a conversation with Dr. Ryan Lee-James and Savannah DiMarco (Council for Professional Recognition, Digital Marketing Manager).




5. But wait…more is coming soon in the next CounciLIVE episodes! Tune in on Thursday, 9/23, at 1 PM EST for a conversation on the Power of Creativity in ECE, featuring CDA® Advisory Committee members Aaron “Buddy” Rhodes and Keisha McClendon!




And mark your calendar for Thursday, 9/30, at 1 PM EST for a special episode on Pre-K Physical Development, featuring Dr. Fran Cleland, West Chester University professor and former SHAPE America president.


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