May 2015
Healthy Children: Some Assembly Required

Kate Gallagher, a Scientist with FPG Child Development Institute at UNC, gives an amazing TED Talk about the groundbreaking Abecedarian Study, what children need for optimal development and how investments in high quality early childhood programs benefit every one of us. It's a must watch video.


Making Moves: Center Directors Get Lesson in Music and Movement


Throughout the year, Ready for School hosts monthly roundtable meetings for Center Director's, covering a variety of topics including regulations, quality standards, professional development and training opportunities. As the school year draws to an end, the Center Directors were able to take advantage of a fun and unique training opportunity. At May's Roundtable, Director's received 1 hour of professional development training in Music and Movement provided by Jennifer Gietzen, a Music Therapist. Jennifer shared the science behind why music and movement are important and related to education, as well as activities to implement into the classroom every day. The training was a hit with the group, and we are looking forward to offering additional fun training opportunities in the future. 


Community Collaboration Helps More Children Have Access to FREE LUNCH This Summer



Summer is an exciting time in Michigan. It means long awaited warm weather and time for children to be outside playing and running around.  However, for many of our local children, it also can mean going hungry.


When the school year ends, so do the free and reduced lunches so many local families relied on. In some cases, these meals are the only food children have access to all day. Some schools and organizations try to extend the lunches into summer, but limited resources make it hard to reach all of the children.


Read on about how our community is ensuring more kids get fed this summer >>>



National Early Childhood Providers and Policy Makers Convene
This month, Pat was invited to attend a convening of national early childhood providers and policy makers that was hosted by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation in Battle Creek.

Program Officers representing work from across the country shared how the landscape is changing to an approach focus vs. program focus.

Jason Gray joins Ready for School Board

The Ready for School Board of Directors welcomed Jason Gray, Staff Accountant at DeBoer, Baumann & Co. PLC to the Ready for School Board this month. Jason will be serving as Board Treasurer and on the Finance Committee. Welcome, Jason!

Kindergarten Assessment Committee to Bring 
Recommendation Fall 2015

The original community discussion about kindergarten readiness began with a series of questions, "Are our children kindergarten ready?", "What does it mean to be ready for kindergarten?" and "How can kindergarten readiness be measured?" To begin addressing these questions, in 2008 a common definition of kindergarten readiness was created by a group of committed, expert educators. After much deliberation, it was decided that the kindergarten screening assessment, DIBELS (dynamic indicators of basic early literacy skills), would be administered to track kindergarten readiness over time. Every year since 2010, the DIBELS have been administered.


Because it has been over five years since this original work, it is appropriate to revisit these questions. Under the leadership of Cal DeKuiper, Superintendent of ZPS, a "Community kindergarten assessment- DIBELS beyond 2015" workgroup has convened.  


Read on about the future of kindergarten assessment>>>




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