Strategic Plans for a Brighter Future. Goals for Success by 6.

These strategies include strengthening, expanding and coordinating existing work in the community. While all strategies may not be currently funded, the Leadership Team has chosen to include them as a road map for future success.

READY FAMILIES

Goal: Parents will be able to obtain the most current multi-lingual and culturally appropriate information they seek on child development, parenting, and school readiness as well as community resources that help and support strengthening families.

Strategy 1: Coordinate and integrate a new and existing public engagement campaign that provide parents, caregivers, and others who work with children the most up to date information about early childhood development, school readiness and parenting.

Strategy 2: Ensure affordable access to the community’s multiple cultural institutions for families and children with age-appropriate, family friendly programming that supports child development and strong families.

Strategy 3: Use Community Meriendas and existing parent groups to build early childhood development and school readiness information into their daily lives to ensure they receive the most useful, culturally appropriate information accessible in all public and educational settings.

Strategy 4: Use public and private organizations to ensure parents have information on basic needs: housing, health care, child care, workforce development, food security and other essential services.

READY EDUCATORS

Goal: Southern Cameron County will provide the community with a high quality early education and care system for all young children – 0 to school entry – in all settings: family childcare, private/community based centers, Head Start, etc., and through all school based early education (staff, educators, and caregivers).

Strategy 1: Across all early child care settings, pursue higher quality accreditation.

Strategy 2: Create a stronger collaboration between the types of early education and care settings to promote joint planning, sharing, and alignment of curriculum, standards, partnerships and assessments as children move from infant and toddler care to preschool to kindergarten.

Strategy 3: Enhance professional development for all early care providers and educators to ensure high quality teaching across all settings focusing primarily on implementing the new Infant and Toddler Guidelines and best practices to improve fluency and comprehension to promote early learning and healthy child development.

Strategy 4: Improve retention and compensation for early care providers and directors and opportunities for them to receive a postsecondary credential that provides them with a living wage.

Strategy 5: Continue to improve access to early child care and education for all children by decreasing financial barriers and allowing and ensuring an adequate supply of services to meet children and families at every stage of their development primarily in the neighborhoods considered “most vulnerable” in southern Cameron County. (EDI Data 2012)

Strategy 6: Create uniform progress checkpoints and assessments between all types of early education and care settings.

READY SYSTEMS

Goal: Healthcare, early intervention, and other systems that serve young children will succeed in earlier detection and targeted responses to barriers of child development and school readiness, including earlier detection of family and environmental conditions to prevent damaging, lifelong impairments in young children.

 Strategy 1: Use pediatric settings to:

  • Conduct universal screenings for physical, behavioral, developmental and family risk factors including pre-parental developmental screenings of their own child.
  • Provide parents with information about child development and parenting.
  • Offer coordination services to ensure families have access to help support a child’s growth and development.
  • Coordinate efforts to distribute “Newborn Packets” to all new parents.

Strategy 2: Enhance the various systems of early intervention to expand and align eligibility for services and smooth transitions from infant and toddler settings into the next stages.

Strategy 3: Focus on identifying and responding to social, emotional and behavioral issues.

READY COMMUNITIES

Goal: The many sectors in our community will work together in partnership to ensure children’s school readiness becomes and remains a top priority.

Strategy 1: Create a system through the Early Childhood Leadership Team that tracks and analyzes all existing public and private funding streams for early childhood and use the comprehensive strategic plan to collectively approach funders to ensure long-term sustainability.

Strategy 2: Continue to use the coalition created, the Early Childhood Leadership Team and United Way of Southern Cameron County serving as the backbone organization, to ensure Success By 6 in the community through implementation and oversight of the community plan.

Strategy 3: Continue to host Community Meriendas within targeted “vulnerable neighborhoods” and parent advisory groups. Coordinate planning with existing neighborhood work and build capacity to empower them to make an impact in their own community.

Strategy 4: Align the work of various city and county departments that serve young children to collaborate with one another to support the goals of the strategic plan.

Strategy5: Link efforts to address broader community needs that impact the stability of families including abuse and neglect as well as economic security.

CHILDREN READY FOR SUSTAINED SCHOOL SUCCESS

Goal: The Early Childhood Leadership Team and SB6 will track and report on the community’s progress and success in ensuring that all children enter school with the necessary skills to succeed.

Strategy 1: In 5 years reassess the neighborhood level data using the Early Development Instrument on Kindergarten age children in the community moving the current percentage of “very ready” children from 23% to 38% by Year 5, a 3 % increase yearly. By 2021 we will have doubled the number of children entering school “very ready” with the necessary skills to succeed (46%).

Strategy 2: Increase comprehension and fluency in pre-kindergarten kindergarten age children so that by Year 5 of the strategic plan 90% of children are successful as measured on all Early Reading Instruments. (ELAP/CPALLS at End-of-Year (EOY) TPRI/Tejas LEE) Track and monitor yearly progression.

Strategy 3: Continue to track and monitor results received from individual child and quality facility assessments used by HeadStart, Texas School Ready Program (TSR), and the Texas Rising Stars program (TRS) and share information and data at least three times a year.

Strategy 4: Yearly, see a minimum 3% increase on meeting the standards on the state’s current 3rd grade reading assessment to ensure children are reading on grade level while focusing on attendance and summer learning loss yearly by continuing to participate in the national Campaign for Grade Level Reading.

Strategy 5: In Year 3, 5 and 7 of the plan, hold an Early Childhood Summit, “Workforce 2021,” to ensure accountability of the plan and report on progress.