DENVER, CO--(Marketwired - Dec 11, 2015) - Best-selling author and international consultant Bob Sornson, Ph.D., will be the keynote speaker during the opening session of the 2016 Rocky Mountain Early Childhood Conference (RMECC) at 7:45 a.m. Friday, February 19. The two-day gathering at the Colorado Convention Center in downtown Denver is one of the nation's premier forums for advocating and advancing early childhood education.

Sornson will discuss "A Job Worth Doing," focusing on teachers using a competency-based model to systematically monitor student progress in all the domains of early childhood. "The Building Blocks of Mathematics" will be the topic of keynote speakers Douglas H. Clements, Ph.D., and Julie Sarama, Ph.D., for their presentation at 7:45 a.m. Saturday, February 20. 

Sponsored by the Colorado Association for the Education of Young Children, Denver's Early Childhood Council and the Early Childhood Council Leadership Alliance, the 2016 RMECC is designed to meet the professional development needs of early childhood practitioners while at the same time providing a forum for community advocates to learn, share and network. Now in its fifth year, the conference aims to support and solidify the growing understanding of the importance of investing in our youngest children by bringing together a broad array of stakeholders, early childhood practitioners, business leaders and policymakers for hundreds of workshops and presentations covering an extensive range of topics that impact early care and education.

Sornson is the founder of the Early Learning Foundation, which works with schools, community agencies and parent organizations to help give every child the opportunity to have a successful early learning experience. The foundation offers training to support every aspect of early development, including language and literacy, numeracy, sensory-motor skills, behavior and self-regulation.

Clements, the Kennedy Endowed Chair in Early Childhood Learning and a professor at the University of Denver, is co-executive director of the Marsico Institute for Early Learning and Literacy, and co-director of the James C. Kennedy Institute for Educational Success at DU's Morgridge College of Education. His many published works focus on the learning and teaching of early mathematics; computer applications; creating, using and evaluating research-based curricula; and taking interventions to scale.

Sarama, also a University of Denver professor and the Kennedy Endowed Chair in Innovative Learning Technologies, directs six projects funded by the National Science Foundation and the Institute of Education Sciences. Her research interests include children's development of mathematical concepts and competencies, implementation and scale-up of educational interventions, professional development models' influence on student learning, and implementation and effects of software environments. 

Attendees at the 2016 RMECC may earn up to six hours of ongoing training credits per day for a total of 12 hours for the two-day conference. Registration is now open online and by mail; necessary forms are available at Online registration requires payment by credit card; payment by check may be made when using the mail-in form provided online. Early Bird rates -- $235 for both days and $130 for only one day -- are available until January 18, 2016. For more information, email, or call 303-791-2772.

The 2016 RMECC is again partnering with the Hyatt Regency Denver Convention Center to offer discounted rates for hotel accommodations during the conference. For details and to book rooms, visit These special prices are available until January 21, 2016.