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Early Childhood Associates

Worcester PEG

Strategic Planning: Worcester Birth to Grade Three Strategic Planning Framework

Overview
To be a truly great, cities must have healthy children, engaged families, and the highest standards in early care and education systems. ECA developed a Strategic Planning Framework to create a comprehensive system of care, early education, teacher supports, and family services.

A city’s diverse leaders and organizations embrace city officials, faith-based communities, law enforcement, businesses, institutions of higher education, health care, government agencies, cultural institutions, and the individuals that serve our youngest children and families. Each must collaborate to make a significant impact.

An early learning system organizes and integrates policies, and builds bridges between programs and services for young children alongside those for the adults who care for and teach them. When each element works well and aligns with other elements, children have the best opportunity to reach their full potential.

Key Activities

  • Conducted a comprehensive multi-faceted needs assessment that included a survey of early education and care providers.
  • Facilitated focus groups with a broad range of stakeholders to better understand strengths and weakness of the City’s existing programs and services.
  • Co-led a citywide Task Force in developing a set of recommendations to guide improvements to early childhood services, with equitable access to early childhood information and services; supporting a high quality workforce; emphasizing the birth to third grade continuum starting with prenatal care, social emotional, mental health, and special needs.

Outcomes

  • Development of Early Alignment for Lifelong Success, Birth to 3rd Grade Strategic Planning Framework. The Framework represents a unique model of collaboration that aligns the resources of health, early learning, and family engagement, aligning all of the city’s resources toward common goals.
  • A new B-3rd Governance Structure to align the city’s efforts and knit together existing programs, policies, and resources to provide a comprehensive citywide system.
  • A vision and strategies to solve the biggest problems facing the City by investing in early and equal development of human potential. Strategies leverage resources, avoid duplication and increase efficiency.

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