Priska Neely

Senior Early Childhood Reporter

Contact Priska Neely

I connect caregivers of children ages 0–5 in L.A. County who live and breathe our early childhood system every day with academics, researchers and policy makers to reveal gaps between the two and shine a light on what’s working and what’s not.

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Stories by Priska Neely

After Super Bowl, a joyful homecoming for young musicians

Forty students from the LA Philharmonic's Youth Orchestra LA provided backup for Coldplay at the halftime show. Back at Disney Hall, they were treated like stars.

Immigrant students sharpen English skills with poetry

A big adjustment for a lot of kids new to the country is learning to speak English. At one school, the performing arts are helping students improve language skills.

It's official, UCLA has a school of music

The Board of Regents voted Thursday to formally establish the Herb Alpert School of Music. It’s the first free-standing music school in the UC system.

Can an insider reform LAUSD? Former colleagues say yes

Even as she ascended to the district’s top ranks, new LAUSD superintendent Michelle King has stayed out of the spotlight. But her former colleagues give clues to her leadership style.

For some teachers, winter break means art lessons

During a four-day workshop, LAUSD teachers learned techniques for using theatre, dance, music and visual art to support Common Core standards.

Pulling strings to start an elementary school orchestra

Students at Huntington Park Elementary School were inspired to create an orchestra. But the school didn't have instruments. Here's how they got them.

LAUSD marching band shrugs off the rain to prep for parade

Members of the All City Honor Marching Band spent hours in the rain outside Dodger Stadium last week to build endurance for the 5.5. mile parade on New Years Day.

The 'rare beauty' in a ballet class for 'all kids'

Kids with special needs often struggle to find a safe space for dance. Bonnie Schlachte teaches classical ballet to students with autism, cerebral palsy and more.

School's arts program helps San Bernardino students bounce back

At Barton Elementary school, one of the most useful ways to help students cope after the nearby shooting was already a big part of its curriculum.

San Bernardino school district holds meeting to improve emergency response

The goal of the "after-action review" was to give the community a chance to review the school district's response to crisis without judgment and determine what could be better.

Using visual art to draw students into coding

Some schools offer classes that combine art and coding to reach a more diverse body of students.

NEA awards more than $4 million to California arts projects

The National Endowment for the Arts awarded 178 grants to projects that foster the creation and presentation of art, as well as community engagement.

California's new poet laureate preaches the power of poetry

Poet and professor Dana Gioia was appointed by the governor for a two-year term. He hopes to reach artists and students outside of the state's metropolitan areas.

'Star Wars' mania becomes a force in schools and classrooms

Riding that wave, some L.A. Unified schools will host "Star Wars"-themed, anti-bullying assemblies next year. Some teachers already use the films as an engagement tool.

New pot of arts funding heads to LAUSD schools

More than a million dollars in new funding for the arts went to schools based on enrollment and need.