Mixed-Delivery Preschool Grant Program 2018 Grantees

ACT for Alexandria Early Care and Education Workgroup (Alexandria)

The project will establish two new mixed-delivery classrooms, each with 18 children, in two currently under-served, high-need neighborhoods.

Innovations: pooled public and private funds; streamlined joint VPI/Head Start/child care subsidy enrollment processes to better serve at-risk families; creation of a Family Engagement Committee within the Early Care and Education Workgroup, to promote increased parent/family engagement and create a pathway for genuine parent input in policy and program decisions.

Early Learning Project, College of Education, James Madison University (Harrisonburg/Rockingham County)

This grantee will continue mixed-delivery expansion by addressing additional barriers faced by private centers, with a concentration on building capacity to serve children who exhibit challenging behaviors. A total of 28 mixed-delivery slots will be created by blending VPI funds and child care subsidy dollars.

Innovations: specialized training/coaching/mentoring to enhance private center capacity to handle challenging behaviors often exhibited by children from distressed or traumatic backgrounds; partnership with Smart Beginnings Greater Harrisonburg to strengthen community collaboration and address fragmentation in planning and delivering early care and education; subsidized transportation for children who have no means to get to participating private centers.

Rappahannock County Public Schools (Rappahannock County)

In response to the sudden closure of local Head Start services last year, the school division and a private center partnered to establish a temporary pre-k alternative for children denied a Head Start experience. This project will solidify that partnership and seek public and private funds to create a permanent solution, including 8 slots for 4 yr. olds (public funds) and a 15-child classroom for 3 yr. olds (private funds).

Innovations: pooled public and private funds and joint campaign to seek new funds; single-point-of-entry system to include all private centers; collaboration with Virginia Quality to develop a joint professional development system and a uniform data collection system to support continuous quality improvement; professional development enhancements including expanded mentoring/coaching opportunities.    

United Way – Thomas Jefferson Area (Charlottesville/Albemarle County)

Grantee will continue to expand community mixed-delivery capacity by establishing 30 new slots for 4 yr. olds in two private centers. The initiative especially addresses the issue of underutilization of public pre-k (VPI and Head Start) by targeting mixed-delivery innovations to the specific barriers identified by families who have previously declined participation in public programs.

Innovations: pooled funding including leveraging child care subsidy funds to meet the need for full-day coverage; close liaison with VDSS to identify and engage parents of rising 4 yr. olds who are currently receiving a child care subsidy; intensive support services from the VQ entity (Ready Kids) including an accelerated quality enhancement regimen for participating centers and the use of a Family Coordinator position to engage families and overcome barriers to pre-k enrollment; use of incentives to promote quality improvement progress at both private centers.

United Way of Roanoke Valley (Cities of Roanoke and Salem; Counties of Roanoke, Botetourt, Franklin)

This grantee will expand and strengthen its mixed-delivery initiative by adding 25 slots in private centers across its region, with a concentration on addressing additional barriers that hinder family access to pre-k and private center participation in mixed-delivery.

Innovations: a multi-tiered “Ready Families/Ready Educators/Ready Communities” approach including more intensive professional development services for participating private centers; incentives for quality improvement activities; more robust two-generation supports for families; increased institutional/bureaucratic flexibility including possible waivers of regulations or practices that hinder family or private center participation.  

New River Valley Regional Commission (Counties of Montgomery, Pulaski, Giles, Floyd)

The project will provide intensive professional development/quality improvement interventions to four private child care centers serving communities with high numbers of VPI-eligible children; and assist these centers in establishing relationships with various providers of early childhood family support services so that centers can connect families with critically-needed supports to improve the impact of early care and education.

Innovations: provision of intensive professional development/quality improvement, with assistance from two highly-rated local centers acting as “Peer Learning Centers”; full integration of private centers and local DSS offices in a single-point-of-entry family engagement/enrollment system; linking private centers to public and private community providers of family support/education services; partnership with local school divisions to promote vocational education opportunities that prepare students to enter the early care and education field.