State Legislature

HIAEYC Public Policy

HIAEYC is the leading voice for high-quality early learning opportunities for all children in the state of Hawai‘i. We advocate for important legislative initiatives by providing information to legislative committees. We keep them aware of the things that are important to our members and the children they support.

We keep our members informed of current bills and their potential impact on our field, and educate our members in how to make their voices heard in effective ways. We encourage our members to be active citizens in the legislative process. This page is designed to keep you informed so, together, our voices are loud and clear as decisions are made that impact our field and the future of our keiki.

2023 HAEYC Bills

The 2023 Legislative Session has ended. HIAEYC had an active role in getting a number of bills through the process and enacted. Your voice and your support made a difference. Here are a list of bills enacted through the support of our members.

  • HB961 provides expansion and enhancement of the Preschool Open Doors subsidy and expansion of EOEL PreK (Universal) preschool classrooms.
  • SB239 establishes a program to support child care providers to obtain quality accreditation from a national organization, and to extend the deadline by which Preschool Open Doors must initiate accreditation to 2029, and achieve accreditation to 2034.
  • HB300 expands funding and support of public preschool classroom operational costs, expands Family-Child Interaction Learning (FCIL) programs, and supports the early childhood education stipend programs for students.

Whether you’re a family member, early childhood student or early childhood professional, please share your stories this legislation session of how early childhood education has made a difference in your keiki’s life. You can email your stories to Mahalo Nui for your support!

HIAEYC Public Policy Committee

Committee Members:

  • Brenda Watanabe, Chair, VP Public Policy
  • Alex Domingo, Board President
  • Jackie Benton-Ching, Board Member At-Large
  • Elaine Yamashita, Member
  • Terry Lock, Member
  • Malia Tsuchiya, Member

The HIAEYC Public Policy Committee is open to any interested member in good standing. The committee meets with changing frequency during the year, depending upon whether the legislators are in session. Contact and let us know if you are interested in being on the committee

Become a Member! Help build a better future for all young children - and all of us.

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