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Today, the U.S. Department of Education announced that Dr. Libby Doggett will be named Deputy Assistant Secretary for Policy and Early Learning at the U.S. Department of Education. She will head up the Office of Early Learning within the Office of Elementary and Secondary Education (OESE), which jointly administers the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge (RTT-ELC) program with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. This fall, the Departments will hold another RTT-ELC competition.


In her role as Deputy Assistant Secretary, Dr. Doggett will work closely with the White House on promoting President Obama’s plan to make high-quality, full-day preschool available to all 4-year-olds from low- to moderate-income families through a new state-federal partnership. The plan is part of the President's proposal to create a birth to age five pipeline of services and supports, including investments in home visiting and Early Head Start-child care partnerships, to prepare children for success in kindergarten and beyond. The plan also includes $750 million in Preschool Development Grants, which the Senate Appropriations Committee recently approved as part of its mark-up of the FY 14 appropriations bill.


“I couldn’t be more pleased with the selection of Libby Doggett to lead the early learning work at the Department,” said OESE Assistant Secretary Deb Delisle. “She brings a wealth of knowledge about early learning and development programs and has the right skill-set to continue the extraordinary partnership we’ve built with the Department of Health and Human Services. Her keen insights, experiences, and vision will help the Department propel our vision for early learning forward.”


Dr. Doggett most recently directed the Pew Home Visiting Campaign, which partners with legislators and other leaders to promote effective state policies and investments in quality, home-based programs for vulnerable new and expectant families. Prior to the Home Visiting Campaign, she directed Pre-K Now, Pew's 10-year campaign that advanced high-quality, voluntary preschool throughout the country.


Upon graduating from the University of Texas in Austin, Dr. Doggett taught in a bilingual first grade classroom at Ortega Elementary in Austin, Texas. Dr. Doggett previously worked at the Department in the mid-nineties, when she served as special assistant to the director of special education and executive director of the Federal Interagency Coordinating Council. In 1999, Dr. Doggett was hired by the National Head Start Association to direct their HeadsUp! Reading program, an innovative, credit-bearing course delivered through satellite technology, and designed to provide early childhood professionals the skills needed to help young children learn to read and write.


“President Obama and Secretary Duncan both recognize that by expanding access to high-quality early learning programs, we can begin eliminating the opportunity gaps that confront far too many American children even before they even enter kindergarten.” says Doggett. “I'm thrilled to be a part of such an important turning point in our nation's education system."


Dr. Doggett holds a doctorate in early-childhood special education from the University of Texas. She is expected to begin at the Department on August 26th. To find out more information about early learning at the U.S. Department of Education and to sign up for our list serv and monthly newsletter, please go to


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