The Obici Healthcare Foundation kicked off “Assignment: Impact! Creating a Foundation for Success” on Wednesday, October 31st armed with data from:
- The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and the Social Determinants of Health
- 2018 Community Health Needs Assessment commissioned by the foundation
- The 2017 JLARC Report, entitled Improving Virginia’s Early Childhood Programs
- Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Program (VKRP)
After careful review and consideration of the local, state and national data and expert presentations, the Obici Healthcare Foundation Board of Directors determined that investment in the early childhood years is critical to health status and well-being down the road.
The $6 million in targeted investments appropriated during the 2018 General Assembly Session to improve the quality of children’s early education experiences set the stage for the Obici Healthcare Foundation’s leveraging $1 million in private funds to expand initiatives in Head Start, Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI), faith-based and private programs in the Western Tidewater area.
The $6 Million in Targeted Investments
- Mandates that the VKRP be implemented in all kindergarten classrooms in the fall and spring to show student growth. For the first time, all Virginia school divisions, teachers and parents including VPI programs will have data on children’s skills beyond literacy upon kindergarten entry. Data will also be used to determine the effectiveness of the VPI program. Funding will provide professional development for teachers and school divisions, helping them to understand how to use the data effectively to improve teaching and learning in the classroom. State Investment: $2.9 million
- Conducts Classroom Assessment Scoring System (CLASS) observations to assess the quality of teacher-child interactions in all VPI programs. UVA’s Center for Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning (CASTL) will observe teacher-child interactions and work with the Virginia Department of Education to develop a plan to ensure that children in VPI programs are receiving high quality early education experiences. Professional development will be provided to improve classroom instruction. State Investment: $1.775million
- Pilots on a voluntary basis in 50 faith-based and private classrooms, the UVA CASTL designed STREAMin3 curriculum, professional development and coaching model that was developed in The New E3 School through funding from E3:Elevate Early Education. The curriculum model uses the latest developmental and early education research. It focuses on the five core skills (relate, regulate, think, communicate and move) and STREAM skills (Science, Technology, Reading, Engineering, Arts and Math). A preschool version of the VKRP will assess the readiness of children. State Investment: $1.25 million
The Obici Healthcare Foundation’s Investment in the Western Tidewater Area
- Expands the pilot of the preschool version of VKRP into programs in the Western Tidewater area to include Suffolk, Franklin, Surry, Isle of Wight and Southampton County. The VKRP readiness assessment builds off the Phonological Awareness Literacy Screening (PALS), to include assessments of children’s skills in math, self-regulation and social skills. A preschool version of the Virginia Kindergarten Readiness Program has been piloted in The New E3 School for the past two years.
- Supports CLASS observations in Head Start, faith-based and private classrooms.
- Pilots the STREAMin3 curriculum model in Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI) and Head Start classrooms.
Educators, superintendents, business and community leaders, policymakers and philanthropists attended last week’s event to launch the public-private partnership. Speakers included Dr. Bob Pianta, Dean of UVA’s Curry School of Education and Founder of CASTL, Delegate Chris Jones and Annette Beuchler, President & CEO of the Obici Healthcare Foundation.
We applaud the innovation, data-driven approach and focus on impacting children by improving their early education experiences and ultimately their health status. Read up on the transformative efforts in Tidewater News and The Suffolk News-Herald.
President & CEO
E3: Elevate Early Education & The New E3 School