The Forum’s History

CirclePic2About the Children’s Forum
As a statewide, not-for-profit membership organization, the Children’s Forum maintains an uncompromising vision to make Florida a state where children grow and thrive in quality environments and where families have access to information, resources, and options to assist them in their parenting roles. Through a broad array of programs, research and education, the Forum is committed to achieving our vision by targeting and supporting those who care for and educate our children daily; the early care and education workforce.

The Children’s Forum has an organizational history that is grounded in the development of principles, programs and policies that continue to serve early childhood development and education in Florida. In 1975, the Forum began with a group of child care advocates who provided consistent quality care services for low-income children. The Forum evolved during the 1980s to include contracted state services for early care and education. In 1989, the Forum became incorporated as a statewide, not-for-profit organization.

Belonging to the Children’s Forum satisfies the “membership in a  professional organization” requirement for the renewal of many early care and education/child care credentials such as a CDA or FCCPC. In addition, we can assist program directors with fulfilling their professional contribution requirement for the renewal of their director credential.  We offer a variety of membership options and benefits for the early care and education community.

There are a number of programs administered through the Children’s Forum and contracted through state and national agencies, private organizations and foundation resources that help set the standard for high-quality early care and education for all children in Florida.

The Children’s Forum is governed by a volunteer Board of Directors with expertise in their respective disciplines and a commitment to early care and education.

Phyllis Kalifeh, President and CEO
Robert Buesing, Board Chair

For more information, please contact Jenna Brown, Communications Director, at 850-487-6344 or