Success in life depends on a good start. Research tells us that children who start behind, stay behind. Our Place is committed to ensuring our children will succeed in school and in life.
Assessment of school readiness conducted at UBC, the EDI, shows that year after year, Strathcona children are among the most vulnerable in the province. Our efforts are focussed on developing and supporting early care and learning opportunities so that all our children can be ready for school. Over the past 5 years, the recently data from the EDI shows positive Collective Impact from these efforts. While Strathcona remains the most vulnerable community in the Province, we have seen a 24% improvement.
The Graduation Strategy pulls together a wide range of programs and resources to support vulnerable children from Early Learning through Elementary School, to High School Graduation and beyond. The continuum of service is shown here: Graduation Strategy continuum and the project’s Logic Model provides additional detail on this holistic comprehensive place-based initiative.
Networking and coordination between community-based early care centres and elementary schools will promote a smooth transition for vulnerable children and their families. Early Learning program supports include Strong Start programs, Nobody’s Perfect, Mother Goose, Family Place Community Action Programs, and Home Instruction for Parents of Preschool Youngsters (HIPPY).
Vulnerable children transitioning from elementary school to high school also require special supports and attention. Peer counselling, tutoring, and access to a full range of sport and recreational activities play an important role in ensuring that our children succeed in Elementary School and High School beyond.
In order to succeed in the 21st Century, our children need access to 1st Century tools. Working with our Economic Development partners, the Graduation Strategy has concluded an initial needs survey and will be implementing a pilot project to ensure families and McLeans and Stamps Place have free access to the internet. Hardware. training, and support will also be art of the pilot project. Ultimately, we hope that we will be able to provide youth with opportunities to learn coding, to develop ‘help desk’ skills, and to assist parents and families members to use the internet for accessing jobs, resources, and social supports.