Update on our 2019 Comprehensive
Facilities have a dramatic impact on access and quality in early learning. The 2019 Early Learning Facilities Needs Assessment funded by Rhode Island’s Preschool Development Grant will focus on better understanding space issues and on recommending concrete strategies to improve existing infrastructure while also getting new quality spaces developed and online. One key component of this assessment is hearing from all of you! Over the last several weeks the LISC team has been reaching out to survey early care and education providers across Rhode Island.
We want to extend a huge thank you to the 164 community based centers and schools who participated in the survey! You may recall, the survey included an opportunity to apply for one of fifteen $1,000 mini-grants for “Out of the Sandbox” creative, low-cost ideas for improving your space. Awardees were selected through a competitive process led by a committee of stakeholders. There were a variety of great ideas ranging from a multi-generational garden space and a mist-walk, to acoustical classroom tiles and lighting modifications to create a more welcoming entrance for families. We are pleased to announce the following grantees:
- Curious Minds Early Learning Center
- Aim High Early Learning Center
- URI Child Development Center
- Saint Elizabeth Manor
- Charlestown Early Learning Center
- Genesis Center
- Woonsocket Head Start/Cass Park
- Providence Public Schools
- Cadence Academy Preschool
- Henderson Learning Center
- Heritage Park YMCA
- Leapfrog Children’s Academy
- Coventry Public Schools
- West End Community Center
- CANE CDC
- Discovery Years Learning Center
There were so many great applications, that additional funds were allocated to create a second tier of $400 mini-grant awardees:
- My Learning Tree
- Silveira Kindergarten and Nursery School
- Children’s Workshop Foundation
- KinderArt of Looking Upwards
- First Step, Inc.
- Maple Hill Early Learning
- Child’s Play
- Busy B’s Academy
- Tri-County Community Action Agency
- Building Blocks Child Care Center
We will continue to outreach for your feedback and creative ideas. We sincerely appreciate your partnership to help offer solutions that address the facilities challenges facing the early learning community!
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The team at LISC is excited to announce the launch of our comprehensive 2019 Early Learning Facilities Needs Assessment! The work of this assessment is being funded by Rhode Island’s Preschool Development Grant. The 2019 assessment will build upon the work of our 2014 assessment, and will also utilize extensive data available in Rhode Island’s 2017 School Buildings Report. LISC has been charged with not only collecting all of the information needed to help state leaders better understand facility challenges facing Rhode Island’s early learning community but more importantly to make a variety of policy and budgetary recommendations based on those findings.
Our goal is to tell your story – to help better frame the challenges community leaders, business owners, school officials and municipalities are facing relative to infrastructure and how these challenges impede the growth and quality of our early learning system.
We also want to make recommendations that really work for you – ideas that not only work on paper but that work in reality! Recommendations to help new quality early learning centers be built, overdue renovations happen and much needed expansions take place. But we can only do this if we have your participation, cooperation and honest feedback. In the coming months we will be e-mailing you, calling you and visiting you. We want you to be a partner in this assessment, and when the final report is released next fall we want you to feel like it reflects your voice and your needs. Take a few minutes to scan through a presentation that outlines the steps we will be taking, this will help you better understand our goals and what we need from you.
Be on the lookout for future messages, coming your way soon!