Play to Learn Act Passes House, Heads to Senate

Mike Seals - March 10, 2021 12:06 pm

OKLAHOMA CITY – Play-based learning is a step closer to becoming an integral part of Oklahoma’s early childhood education experience as the Oklahoma Play To Learn Act overwhelmingly passed the House on Tuesday with a vote of 76 to 16.

The Oklahoma Play to Learn Act (HB1569), authored by Rep. Jacob Rosecrants, D-Norman, declares the Legislature’s intent to focus on the importance of child-centered, play-based learning as the most developmentally appropriate way for young children to learn.

The measure also authorizes educators to create learning environments that promote movement, creative expression, exploration, socialization, and reading for pleasure, among other things. Additionally, HB1569 allows school districts to provide ongoing early childhood professional development for teachers and administrators, which may include existing State Department of Education professional development programs. Lastly, the measure prohibits a school district from preventing a teacher from utilizing play-based learning in early childhood education, which will empower early childhood educators to teach children the way they were taught to teach.

“Play-based learning is about engaging children on their terms,” Rosecrants said. “Our hope is that through that engagement we can foster a lifelong  love of learning in students.”

This is the second time the legislation has passed the House. However, the bill stalled last year due to COVID.

“This is a victory for the many education advocates that have had a hand in this legislation,” Rosecrants said. “Once it gets across the finish line, The Play to Learn Act will be a victory for Oklahoma students and will serve as a great way to recruit and retain our early childhood educators.”

Constituents of House District 46 can reach Rep. Jacob Rosecrants at (405) 557-7329 or email [email protected]

 

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