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NAEYC’s New Strategic Direction

  Every year, businesses make the dash to evaluate their strategic plans and refine goals. Nonprofits are no exception. The National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) is leading the charge in creating a completely new and innovative Strategic Direction. These new changes were formed through utilizing the opinions of NAEYC members, leaders, staff and volunteers that were asked about NAEYC’s previous mission, vision, and goals. The new Strategic Direction includes a new mission statement, a new vision statement, and a commitment to the core values. With five strategic priorities set (or strategic goals) the NAEYC is hoping to accomplish the following in 2015: Children ages birth through eight have access to high-quality learning. Early childhood education profession demonstrates

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Office of Innovation and Improvement 2015 Grant Competitions

The Office of Innovation and Improvement (OII) has major plans for grant competitions during the remainder of the current fiscal year ending on September 30, 2015. Headquartered within the Department of Education, OII will conduct 11 grant competitions in six program areas, including: Arts in Education, Charter Schools, Investing in Innovation, Opportunity Scholarship, Ready to Learn Television and Supporting Effective Educator Development. The earliest deadline is April 4, 2015. The grant competitions are listed below. Each of the grants have specific requirements that need to be met in order to apply. The Arts in Education National Program grant is to support high-quality arts education projects and programs for children and youth. Supporting Effective Educator Development (SEED) is a grant available to

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National Head Start Association

From cross-country photo exhibits, to Nike Go Smart on the U.S. Capitol lawn, to the Annual Parent Conference in New Orleans, the National Head Start Association (NHSA) had a busy year in 2014. To kick off 2015, NHSA members took part in the Winter Leadership Institute conference in late January to discuss important policies and issues facing the Early Learning community. Head Start and Early Head Start programs focus on early childhood development and education, and are administered by the Office of Head Start (OHS), within the Administration for Children and Families (ACF). Head Start supports school readiness for young children from low-income families through local early childhood education agencies. Programs provide support for the mental, social, and emotional development

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Coca–Cola Foundation Funds Education Initiatives Year-Round

The Coca-Cola Company and its global philanthropic arm, The Coca-Cola Foundation, partner with nonprofit organizations worldwide that address community needs and priorities in a meaningful way. Funding is provided for programs in one of four categories, including education. Educational support for communities focuses on scholarships, school dropout prevention, access to education programs, and other initiatives. All requests for funding must meet specific guidelines and align with the global pillars of the Coca-Cola Foundation. To determine if an organization is eligible for Coca-Cola community support, the organization can fill out an Eligibility Questionnaire. Applications for grants or sponsorships may be submitted throughout the year and must be submitted online. Any applications faxed or mailed will be returned to the organization. Visit

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Summer Learning Program Enrollment to Increase in 2015?

  A recent Wallace Foundation report reveals higher numbers of parents enrolling children in summer learning programs.  The data collected indicates that more parents are interested in high quality summer learning programs for their children.  Afterschool Alliance compiled a similar report called America After 3PM highlighting an increase in participation rates and demand for high quality summer learning programs. Results from the 2014 America After 3PM survey found that, 33% of families had at least one child participate in a summer learning program in the summer of 2013; a 25% increase from the summer of 2009. The survey also indicates the demand for summer learning programs is high. Fifty-one percent of those families surveyed say they would like for their children to

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Ezra Jack Keats Mini-Grant Program

Ezra Jack Keats (EJK) Foundation offers Mini-Grants of up to $500 to eligible organizations committed to providing innovative and artistic opportunities for children that support creative expression. Educators are challenged to develop a project or program on a budget of $500 or less. Ezra Jack Keats was an accomplished writer and children’s book illustrator. He won the 1963 Caldecott Medal for illustrating The Snowy Day. Keats was a lifelong artist who illustrated over 85 books, and wrote and illustrated 22 children’s books. The EJK Foundation continues his legacy by encouraging children’s talents through art and literacy programs in public schools and libraries. The EJK Foundation Mini-Grant Program is an excellent opportunity to fund a project or program that may not

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Federal Program Spotlight: Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program

  This post is part of Transform Consulting Group’s blog series highlighting federal programs that provide education opportunities and/or youth development services in communities. The Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) is associated with the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children, colloquially known as WIC. WIC provides federal grants to states for supplemental foods, health care referrals, and nutrition education at no cost to low-income pregnant and post-partum women, and to infants and children up to 5 years of age, who are found to be at nutritional risk. The program is managed by USDA Food and Nutrition Service. Congress established FMNP in 1992 to expand awareness and the use of farmers’ markets by providing fresh, unprepared, locally grown fruits and vegetables

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Bibliographies that Boost Family Engagement

  Family engagement strategies are constantly evolving due to the development of new technology and consumer utilization of it. The Family Involvement Network of Educators (FINE), which convenes thousands of stakeholders committed to promoting strong partnerships between schools, families, and communities, publishes a yearly bibliography that contains best practice research on innovative family involvement. Compiled by the Harvard Family Research Project and members of FINE, the Family Involvement Bibliography series provides essential information to both inform and influence. Critical topics like the ones listed below are covered. Transition to school Children’s media use in America Family-school connectedness Family involvement in early childhood education Family involvement in adolescence Children’s early social development Parents and teacher support among Latino immigrant youth Multicultural teaching

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Annual Hoosier Survey

  Each year, the Bowen Center for Public Affairs at Ball State University and WISH-TV Channel 8 partner to create a “snapshot” of current public opinion about issues in Indiana. The non-partisan survey is designed to take the pulse of the state with regard to the most pressing issues facing Hoosiers. At the beginning of every calendar year, survey results are delivered to the Indiana General Assembly so that lawmakers can gauge public views about issues they are likely to face in the coming session. The Annual Hoosier Survey has attracted national attention and received coverage in national media outlets as well as professional conferences. In 2014, the survey found that job creation was of top priority to Hoosiers, followed

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Drug-Free Communities Support Program Grant Opportunity

  Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) has announced funding available for the Drug Free Communities (DFC) Support Program grant that will award up to $125,000 per year to approximately 170 organizations across the United States combating substance use and abuse among youth. Created by the Drug-Free Communities Act of 1997, the DFC Support Program has two main goals: To strengthen and establish collaboration between non-profit agencies, communities, and governments to support efforts to reduce substance use among the youth of the country. To reduce substance use among youth, and overtime reduce substance youth in adults. To do this, the DFC Program will address factors in communities that tend to increase the use of substances and promoting factors that

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