Jackie Bezos of the Bezos Family Foundation delivered the keynote address at the State of the Children event.
College Bound from Birth
In 2008, Collaborative for Children launched the College Bound from Birth program at six child care centers and eight home-based child care providers in the south Houston neighborhoods of Sunnyside and South Park. The long-term goal of College Bound from Birth is to increase the number of children who graduate from high school and continue to pursue higher education.
The program’s additional goals are:
- All children who participate from birth are school-ready when they enter kindergarten
- 95% of third graders who participated in the program from birth are at grade-level in reading and math
- 80% of students graduate from high school
- At least 50% of graduates pursue higher education
The College Bound from Birth approach is simple. We improve quality where children are, in places they already go, through trusted individuals and networks already in place. This means that we work with child care center directors and teachers to build their capacity to deliver high-quality learning experiences in improved physical learning environments.
We also work with parents through both intensive one-on-one and group classes, teaching new parenting skills to improve the home learning environment and the quality of parent-child interactions. And our commitment to the neighborhood means that we also are involved in community partnerships, allowing us to become part of the fabric of the communities we serve.
The program is working. Directors, educators and parents all overwhelmingly indicate an increase in knowledge and skills as a result of College Bound from Birth intervention, and have demonstrated a commitment to putting their new skills into practice. The most compelling results, though, are seen in student performance.
Students who graduated from Sunnyside College Bound from Birth programs have entered the Houston Independent School District prepared to succeed. 98% of College Bound from Birth graduates are now passing their first grade courses, and their average course grade is 86.
The individual and social impacts of the College Bound from Birth investment compound consecutively, as children who have benefitted from quality early education perform better in school and go on to live more productive and prosperous lives, and each year new groups of children enter centers with improved early learning quality standards.
With success documented in Sunnyside / South Park and participating centers there entering a sustainability phase, College Bound from Birth has begun expansion into its second Houston neighborhood, Aldine. Expansion of the program into additional neighborhoods is limited only by our resources. With your gift supporting College Bound from Birth, we can increase the rate at which we can improve early learning for all of Houston’s at-risk children.