History of Robert-Leslie Publishing: Preparing Every Young Child for Future Success
Expectations for early childhood education are changing. Current research in the fields of early childhood development, child psychology, and neuroscience is causing educators and political officials to reconsider the school's role in educating young children and the early childhood curriculum. Numerous studies verify the dramatic effects of a high-quality preschool education on the future success of individuals and its long-term positive impact on society and the economy. Further altering the early education landscape is the push for greater school accountability and student achievement at all levels under the No Child Left Behind Act and other state and local initiatives.
Parents are increasingly aware of the benefits of early education and the need to better prepare their children for kindergarten. This has contributed to the rapid growth in preschool enrollment, which swelled from 21 percent of children ages three to four in 1970 to 55 percent in 2002. However, lack of financial resources or quality early education centers in their area often limits parents ability to provide learning opportunities for their children. It's difficult for children who start school below grade level to catch up. Research shows that without intervention nearly 90 percent of children who are poor readers in first grade will still be poor readers in fourth grade.
To provide every young child with the experiences and skills they need to be successful learners, Judi and James Coffey formed Robert-Leslie Publishing. Their goal is to help young children succeed by learning about the world around them and their place in it. Although Robert-Leslie was established in March 2005, the development of its debut product, The InvestiGator Club, began many years before. The InvestiGator Club is based on scientific research about how young children learn, pedagogically sound teaching practices, and a wealth of experience in the classroom.
Judi Coffey became acutely aware of the need for improved early education programs during her years as an early childhood and special education teacher. "Children who come to kindergarten without basic skills are immediately plugged into a category that may stay with them for the rest of their school experiences," Coffey explained. "They are treated differently than children who have received a good preschool education. It's imperative to reach children at a young age because their early experiences are a significant determinant of later success in school and in life. My passion has always been to ensure all young children, whether at risk or above grade level, receive a high-quality education that prepares them for the next level as well as instills in them a love of learning."
With more than 30 years in the early childhood and educational publishing arenas, the company founders have surrounded themselves with a team of highly regarded business leaders, authors, and advisors who have an impressive record of accomplishments, expertise, and renown to produce exceptional teaching products.
Public, private, and government pressure to focus attention on and allocate more resources to prekindergarten is driving the trend toward universal preschool for all children. This trend is resulting in an increased need for premium instructional materials to be used in new and expanded classrooms as well as by parents educating their children at home.
At the heart of Robert-Leslie's mission is the consistent publication of exciting, developmentally appropriate, research-based learning materials for children, teachers, parents, and school administrators.