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Jill Biden teams up with Kate Middleton on school tour

First lady Jill Biden and Britain’s Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge. Daniel Leal-Olivas/AFP via Getty Images


Jill Biden teams up with Kate Middleton on school tour


Jill Biden joined Duchess of Cambridge Kate Middleton in the United Kingdom on Friday June 10, visiting a classroom of young children before participating in a roundtable discussion on the significance of early childhood education.

Biden, a lifelong educator, and the duchess visited the state-funded Connor Downs Academy, which serves children who have suffered trauma in their lives.

The Duchess of Cambridge and the First Lady of the United States have both called for a “fundamental shift” in the way we handle child care and education.

A highlight of the visit was a tour of the school’s outside area by Biden and the Duchess, which included viewing bunnies that the students take care of. The first lady brought a big dish of carrots for the animals.

The two ladies spoke with the kids, aged 4 to 11, asking them about the projects they were working on, and the youngsters, who were all dressed in uniforms, displayed their work.

Janice Eddy, Head of School, told reporters that the academy is a “trauma informed school,” which means it works with kids who have encountered trauma in their lives. The school is state-funded and has a waiting list.


Kate and Dr. Biden said in an opinion article published by CNN that the early years of a child’s existence are critical to their future and that expertise must be “at the heart of how we rebuild with boldness and purpose from the pandemic”

“If we care about how children perform at school, how they succeed in their careers when they are older, and about their lifelong mental and physical health, then we have to care about how we are nurturing their brains, their experiences and relationships in the early years before school.”

The first lady, who has been a teacher for decades and is now a community college professor, was questioned about the importance of early childhood education.

“It’s very important to the foundation,” she said. “As a teacher at the upper levels, if they don’t have a good foundation, they fall so far behind. This is amazing to see how far advanced they are.”

Biden seemed to be at ease, sitting down with children who were reading “Greta and the Giants,” doing arithmetic, and sketching.

Representatives for Biden and Middleton said they went to the school’s “Reception Class” to see how its children are supported by the “Early Years Foundation Stage” curriculum, which utilizes child-led instruction to help pupils grow “as independent, confident and successful learners.”

The two ladies said that they wanted to collaborate globally on the problem, using measures such as discussions about the issue in families and communities, and corporate leaders looking into ways to assist parents and carers.

During their time inside, Biden and the duchess sat at three separate tables, and at the last one, when their instructor said they were studying about the White House and Kensington Palace, Biden took up a picture of the White House and bent down to a little girl to show her where her bedroom located.

Biden and the Duchess were both given with tiny bouquets of local flowers before leaving the school at the conclusion of their event, which were delivered to them by two of the school’s pupils.

The Duchess of Cambridge has “seen first-hand how the root cause of so many of today’s hardest social challenges – from poor mental health and addiction to family breakdown and homelessness – can be traced right back to the earliest years of life,” according to the palace.

She “worked with experts and spent time listening to the sector, parents, families and carers about their experience of and work on the early years.”

Kate said that welcoming Dr. Biden was a “huge honour.”

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