TOPEKA (KSNT) – Kansas Governor Laura Kelly was able to get some of the brightest minds in early childhood education to meet at the statehouse for one common goal: bettering the children of Kansas.

On Friday, Kelly hosted the first of many meetings this year for the Kansas Early Childhood Transition Task Force. This taskforce was the first executive order she signed to start her second term as the Governor of Kansas.

The taskforce was created back in 2022 by an executive order from Gov. Kelly. She says this group is tasked with getting us as a state where we need to go to improve our early childhood education. It’s made up of state lawmakers, health and education leaders and representatives from children-focused agencies from across the state.

Gov. Kelly says the reason Kansas is ranked 48th and 49th in early childhood education is because the state’s programs are split between four government agencies: the Department of Education, the Department of Childhood and Families, the Department of Aging and Disabilities and the Children’s Cabinet. She says the goal of this taskforce is to get rid of duplicate programs and ensure quality care for state residents.

“That’s why this taskforce is put together, to try to bring all of those services, programs that we are currently doing, streamline them, make them more efficient, more effective and probably less costly,” Gov. Kelly said.

Gov. Kelly says she wants this taskforce to be part of her legacy and wants to have the most comprehensive and robust early education system in the state.