On March 17, 2011, Gov. Mark Dayton signed Executive Order 11-05 creating the Early Learning Council. His press release said he has re-authorized a statewide panel, the Early Childhood Advisory Council, originally formed in 2008 by Governor Pawlenty through Executive Order 08-14. Governor Dayton renamed the group the "Early Learning Council."
The Council has an expanded membership that will be named through the open appointments process. The primary goal of the Early Learning Council is to ensure that all children are school-ready by 2020. Council members will make recommendations to the Governor and Legislature, including a legislative proposal that will effectively create a high-quality early childhood system in Minnesota that will help improve educational outcomes for all children.
The Early Learning Council was reviewed by the Legislative Commission on Planning and Fiscal Policy (LCPFP) in 2013 as part of their biennial duty required by Minn. Stat. 3.885 Subd. 11. The LCPFP's 2013 Recommendations called for keeping the council.
Governor Tim Walz provided for the council's continuance by issuing Executive Order 19-29. However, the council was eliminated by Executive Order 19-34, which at the same time established the State Advisory Council on Early Childhood Education and Care in its place.
All three councils were created and tasked, in part, with fulfilling the requirements of the federal Improving Head Start for School Readiness Act of 2007 as provided in Public Law 110-134.