The League of Women Voters of the Palatine area, in partnership with the Illinois PTA and the Save the Children Action Network (SCAN) hosted a showing of the powerful documentary No Small Matter.  An in-depth look at the value of high-quality early childhood programs, No Small Matter presented compelling evidence on the difference high-quality programs have on life outcomes for children, families and communities.  The audience at the February 4thscreening had an opportunity to view the documentary and discuss the points raised about the value of investing in high-quality early childhood programs.  Some of the startling facts revealed:

  • Brain research clearly demonstrates that children are born “ready to learn”
  • Toxic stress impacts every aspect of a child’s life
  • Poverty prevents many families from accessing high-quality early childhood programs
  • Nearly 50% of children under the age of 6 in the US live in poverty
  • Long-term research (40+ years) demonstrates that high-quality early childhood programs lead to better choices in adulthood
  • Over 70% of American youth (17 -24) are ineligible for military service due to poor health, poor education, and poor choices leading to incarceration.

No Small Matter is the first feature documentary to explore the most overlooked, underestimated, and powerful force for good in America today: early childhood education. Through poignant stories and surprising humor, the film lays out the overwhelming evidence for the importance of the first five years, and reveals how our failure to act on that evidence has resulted in an everyday crisis for American families, and a slow-motion catastrophe for the country.

Organizations around the state are hosting screenings:

February 29, 1:30p – 3:30p at Moraine Valley Community College, Palos Hill

March 4, 6:00p – 8:00p at Batavia Fine Art Center, Batavia

March 5, 6:30p – 8:30p at Northern Illinois University Naperville Campus, Naperville

March 6, 5:00p – 7:00p at HANA Center, 4300 North California Avenue, Chicago

Review the full listing of screenings dates and times available here to find a showing near you. Also visit or to watch the trailer and learn more!

No Small Matters research and data strongly suggests that there is the political will at the state and national levels to make early childhood programs a priority as a strong investment in our future. The Legislation Platform of the Illinois PTA, Section 6 c, calls for the support of early childhood education. The Governor’s Early Learning Counsel was created by statute in 2003, and in 2006 Preschool For All made Illinois the first state to establish universal early childhood priorities.  We continue to monitor and report on innovations in early childhood.