Feb. 28 is Early Childhood Day at the Roundhouse 

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Press Release

February 24, 2023


Jessica Preston
PR Specialist

Email: jessica.preston@ececd.nm.gov
Mobile: (505) 699-5937
1120 Paseo De Peralta
Santa Fe, NM 87501

SANTA FE – On Tuesday, February 28, the New Mexico Early Childhood Education and Care Department (ECECD) will hostCelebrating Early Childhood: The Most Critical Learning Yearsin the rotunda of the New Mexico State Capitol Building.

“In our first in-person Early Childhood Day, we are excited to celebrate New Mexico families, young children, and the dedicated early childhood professionals who educate and care for them during their most important developmental years,” said ECECD Cabinet Secretary Elizabeth Groginsky. “This will also be an important opportunity for families and community members to raise awareness with their legislators about the importance of fully funding our prenatal to five education system in New Mexico.”

ECECD will offer activities for infants, toddlers, and preschool children, including activities, crafts, a photobooth, snacks and more. Those in attendance will have the opportunity to tour toddler and outdoor model classrooms, sit in on story time with legislators, and visit community partner exhibits for prizes and information about services available to New Mexico families.

The program will conclude with the reading of a proclamation honoring Elcin Bahadirli, a New Mexico early educator who passed away in the recent earthquakes in Turkey, a keynote speech fromGovernor Michelle Lujan Grishamand the premiere screening of episode two ofThe Early Show with Alax, ECECD’s groundbreaking new educational series for families.

Celebrating Early Childhood: The Most Critical Learning Years
Tuesday, February 28th– 8:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.
New Mexico State Capitol Rotunda, Santa Fe, NM

8:00 a.m. – Event opens to the public:

  • ECECD and external partners host tables with information on early childhood programs and services, children’s activities, snacks, and prizes for families and young children
  • Indoor and outdoor toddler classrooms set up for play and exploration

9:00 a.m. – Story time with Sen. Michael Padilla   
11:00 a.m. – Story time with Rep. Micaela Lara Cadena 
11:30 a.m. – Story time with Sen. Harold Pope 
12:00 p.m. – Keynote and Press Conference in the Rotunda:  

  • Welcome from ECECD Secretary Groginsky 
  • Premiere of Episode 2 of The Early Show with Alax 
  • Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham 
  • Proclamation honoring Elcin Bahadirli, a NM early educator who passed away in the recent earthquake in Turkey  
  • 2023 NM Teacher of the Year Tara Hughes 

 2:00pm – Conclude, break down tables/classrooms

Event flyer is available for download here

Facebook event page: https://fb.me/e/3eIl0ucUe – will host final agenda and speaker updates


Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham launched the New Mexico Early Childhood Education and Care Department (ECECD) in 2020, making New Mexico among the first states to consolidate all early childhood programs and services under a single cabinet-level agency. Under this administration, ECECD has led the nation by expanding access to free New Mexico PreK, overseeing the largest investment in early childhood infrastructure in state history, and implementing cost-free child care for a majority of New Mexico families. Learn more about how ECECD supports children, families, and the early childhood professionals that serve our communities at nmececd.org. On Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram as @NewMexicoECECD.