Thursday, July 26, 2012
Alexander County Partnership for Children recently recognized outgoing board members Dale Clary, Maria Southers, and Paula Daniels. Susan Cogdill, Executive Director, thanked outgoing board members for their service and dedication to the young children of Alexander County. Collectively the outgoing board members provided sixteen years of service. The Alexander County Partnership for Children is a local Smart Start initiative that works to ensure children enter school health and ready to succeed. For more information visit the partnership website: www.alexanderchildren.org. Alexander County Partnership for Children is a United Way agency.
Tuesday, July 3, 2012
Ms. Dara Grinton is the assistant teacher in the infant classroom at Lulu’s Child Enrichment Center. She has been observed consistently performing an appropriate diaper change and hand-washing procedure. Dara is aware of the developmentally appropriate milestones for all of the children she provides primary care giving for on a daily basis. It is obvious to outside observers that Dara enjoys her position and that the children she cares for are greatly loved!
Mrs. Sheri Hamrick is the owner of All God’s Children Family Child Care Home. She has been observed being consistently loving of all the children in her family child care home. Sheri consistently utilizes the proper hand-washing technique. She ensures that children get beyond the allotted one- hour time frame of outside/ active play daily. The active play time ensures that all children learn from an early age the importance of a healthy and active lifestyle.
Mrs. Barbara Hildebran is the lead teacher in the one year old classroom at First Baptist Child Development Center. Mrs. Hildebran was seen patiently, lovingly and quietly entertaining a child who was unable to sleep during rest time. This was a wonderful reminder that all children do not sleep and Mrs. Hildebran was happy to play with him instead of insisting that it was rest time. This was an inspiration to see!!
Mrs. Dawn Burns is the lead teacher in the infant classroom at Lulu’s Child Enrichment Center. Mrs. Dawn has taken many changes in her classroom in stride. The classroom is full of babies who enjoy individualized care and developmentally appropriate centers. Mrs. Dawn, we applaud you for the progress you have already made and look forward to seeing what the future holds.
On Tuesday, June 18, 2012 child care professionals, parents and business leaders from Alexander County traveled to the North Carolina General Assembly as part of Smart Start’s statewide “Tuesdays for Tots” initiative. The constituents met with the Alexander County legislative delegation and asked members to restore $18.8 million to Smart Start. In 2011, Smart Start funding was reduced by 20% ($37.6 million), disproportionately more than any other component of the education system. As a result thousands of children are no longer benefiting from much-needed early childhood programs.
“There are only 2,000 days between the time a baby is born and when that child shows up in for the first day of kindergarten,” said Alexander County delegation member Dale Clary who is board chairman of the Alexander County Partnership for Children. “We’re meeting with legislators to discuss the needs of children in our community, the science that supports programs like Smart Start, and why investing in our youngest citizens is a wise investment for families, the economy and our society as a whole.”
State funding for Smart Start has been cut by $80 million over the last decade. These cuts are occurring at the same time that economists, military leaders, law enforcement and business leaders are advocating that investments in young children are one of the strongest investments for sustained growth and job creation, protecting our national security, and providing children with the opportunity to reach their potential.
Created by the North Carolina General Assembly in 1993, Smart Start is a network of 77 nonprofit local partnerships led by a state-level organization, The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. working together measurably to measurably increase the health and well-being of young children, building the foundation for all future learning, by:
· Improving children’s early care and education programs so that they are safe, healthy and provide opportunities for children to learn skills they need for success in school.
· Providing parents with tools that support them in raising healthy, happy, successful children.
· Ensuring that children have access to preventive health care.
Local residents traveling to the North Carolina General Assembly today included: Dale Clary, Reverend Tim Marsh, Natasha Beckner, Melissa Summers, and Susan Cogdill The residents met with Senator Dan Soucek of the Alexander County legislative delegation and visited with Representative Mark Hollo’s legislative assistant. Representative Hollow was unavailable due to a change in a committee meeting schedule.
Medical providers are giving a prescription for reading to their young patients at Alexander County Health Department and Family Care Center PA. An age appropriate book is given as part of regular pediatric checkups at these two medical practices. Joining more than 4,779 programs nationwide, these medical practices are preparing America’s youngest children to succeed in school through participation in Reach Out and Read.
Reach Out and Read's evidence-based model is included in regular pediatric checkups by advising parents about the importance of reading aloud and giving developmentally-appropriate books to children. The program begins at the 6-month checkup and continues through age 5. Families served by Reach Out and Read program read together more often, and their children enter kindergarten with larger vocabularies, stronger language skills, and better prepared to achieve their potential.
Alexander County Partnership for Children is one of 14 Smart Start partnerships selected to implement Reach Out and Read and works with Alexander County Health Department and Family Care Center PA. In addition to receiving books to distribute to children, a Literacy Corner was furnished at each office with materials funded from Smart Start's Reach Out and Read program activity. The Literacy Corner is filled with books for children to read while waiting for their medical visit. The corner also has puppets, flannel board stories, and other literacy enhancement materials.