Speakers and Schedules

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Keynote & Featured Speakers

2017 Keynote Flyer
2017 Final Schedule

2017 Interest Session list

 2017 Meet Our Presenters Guide

2017 Presenter Agreement

 2017 Conference Program



Home Visitors and SECA 2017! 

Join us for special sessions just for home visitors and a variety of other sessions that will help to support you as you work with families and children.




Wednesday/March 8, 2017

Possibilities, Policies and Practices for the Future:

Early Childhood Education in the South

A SECA Research Symposium • March 8, 2017  9:00 am-4:30 pm

The Symposium will stimulate thought and discussion as national and regional experts share with participants the challenges facing the early childhood teaching profession today as well as in the future. For more information, Click Here.



 Thursday/March 9, 2017

2017 Trainer Institute
Practice-Based Coaching: Why, Who, What and How?
Kristin Tenney-Blackwell

Photo Tenney-BlackwellKristin Tenney-Blackwell, M.A., LLP, IMH-E, has over 17 years of experience in infant and early childhood mental health and early childhood education.  She is passionate about promoting young children's social and emotional development in an effort to support resiliency. Kristin has been active in providing consultation and guidance for organizations such as Vanderbilt University, Erikson Institute, ZERO TO THREE, the Devereux Center for Resilient Children, Early Head Start, Head Start and other early childhood programs on issues related to early childhood mental health and school readiness.

Click here to download the Trainer Institute flyer.

2017 Director's Seminar
September-1024x1024Building Systems to Support Practice-Based Coaching
September Gerety

September Gerety is passionate about learning and school readiness for all young children, especially those considered to be at-risk. Over the last 20 years, she has been a teacher, administrator, parent educator, coach, and mentor teacher. She worked for the University of Washington as the Practice-Based Coaching Coordinator at the National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning. September currently provides training in coaching, parent education, implementing research-based teaching practices, and preventing challenging behavior for early childhood programs. She has a BA in Elementary Education and Master's Degree in Educational Leadership.

Click here to download the Director's Seminar flyer.


Friday/March 10, 2017


Dr. Susan B. Neuman

Word Wizardry:  Creating an Environment that Promotes Language Developmentneuman photo

Vocabulary is a strong predictor of children's achievement. Yet many of our children who come from economically disadvantaged communities have not had the opportunity to engage in rich language experiences which are essential to literacy development.  This presentation will       focus on the importance of oral language development in promoting children's social emotional development and school readiness skills

Susan B. Neuman is a Professor and Chair of Teaching and Learning at New York University in New York City specializing in education and early childhood policy. Previously, she has been a Professor at the University of Michigan and has served as the U.S. Assistant Secretary for Elementary and Secondary Education under George W. Bush.  Dr. Neuman has authored 11 books that focus on education and educational policies among them, Changing the Odds for Children at Risk and Giving Children a Fighting Chance.


Dr. Tammy Pawloski

Challenges and Opportunities:  Why Poverty Matters and How Teachers Can Matter MorePawloski 4

Life with limited key resources can impact development, but teachers can matter more!  Learn how to reframe challenges faced in high-poverty schools as opportunities for uncovering often-hidden potential.  Take away resources and strategies that engage the brain, empower the learner, and change the outcomes.

Tammy Pawloski is Professor of Education and Director of the Center of Excellence to Prepare Teachers of Children of Poverty at Francis Marion University, Florence, South Carolina.  She holds a Ph.D. from the University of South Carolina, and prior to joining the faculty of FMU in 2000, she served on the faculties of USC in South Carolina, and Ventura College and Pepperdine University in Southern California.



Public Policy Luncheon

Charles W. Fluharty

Thinking Bigger About Smaller Places: The Rural Southcharles-fluharty

Rural America stands in the midst an amazingly disruptive milieu – socially, culturally, demographically, economically, politically. A collective impact approach, targeted to systems change, will be necessary to secure new advantages in rural areas. This is true in all sectors, but especially important in early childhood education and in efforts to address the rural social determinants of health. This presentation will address emerging rural opportunities, outline the critical importance of regional rural innovation in the lives of rural children, and suggest exemplary models worth emulation.

 Charles W. Fluharty is the founder, President, and CEO of the Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI), the only U.S. national policy institute solely dedicated to assessing the rural impacts of public policies.   A Clinical Professor in the College of Public Health at the University of Iowa, and a Research Professor in the Harry S Truman School of Public Affairs at the University of Missouri, he was the Founding Director of the Missouri Public Policy Institute, as well as a principal in the design and development of the eventual Truman School of Public Affairs. The author of numerous policy studies and journal articles, he has presented dozens of Congressional testimonies and briefing as well as senior policy consultation to a both government and state and local organizations.
Click here to download the 2017 Public Policy Luncheon flyer





Saturday/March 11, 2017

Red Grammer and Carol McCloud

Bucketfilling: Grow Kindness, Respect, Courtesy and Cooperation in Your Classroom

Learn how to integrate the naturally compelling elements of story, visual art, melody, rhythm and rhyme in playful and interactive ways with content that encourages social/emotional/character development. Red and Carol will employ content from Carol's bestselling books on Bucketfilling and Red's world-renowned music to show how to create a "bucketfilling" environment that increases kindness, respect and courtesy and decreases mean-spiritedness and negativity.

Red Grammer is an internationally known children's singer/songwriter whose music has been used in classrooms around the world to enhance their social/emotional/ character programs. His recordings have won numerous Parents Choice Awards and a Grammy nomination.  His latest recording, Circle of Light: Songs for Bucket Fillers, is an exciting new addition to the Bucket Filling Program.

Carol McCloud has spent 20 years in education as teacher, counselor, youth mentor, and early education director. She is an award winning author, Talent Smart® Emotional Intelligence Certified Trainer and her book on Bucketfilling is used in classrooms around the world.




Especially for You at SECA 2017: Welcome to Directors of Faith-Based Programs! 

  • Do you work within a faith-based setting?
  • Do you ever feel that you are "going it alone," separated from other early childhood                professionals and wondering how to make this work?
  • Have you found curriculum, training opportunities, and funding sources that fit your needs or are you searching?

The SECA Board of Directors would like to invite you to a special event at SECA 2017 that will support an ecumenical discussion that is designed to give you an opportunity to             connect with others who work in faith-based programs and provide input on how SECA can meet your needs as members.   You'll also have the delightful opportunity to enjoy a special session on character development in the early years, presented by Terre Harris, Director of The Weekday Preschool, Christ United Methodist Church, Jackson, Mississippi.

 Please help spread the word, make plans to join us, and remember to register for this special session.  (There is no additional registration required to attend this session, just let us know that you are coming!)