The goal of the Early Childhood Program is to provide quality early childhood services. One of the reasons why this program is so successful is because each of the programs are similar in nature, so they can work together.
“Our ability to network and coordinate service children may need in any of our programs makes us a great resource for any family,” said Terri Locke, early childhood program supervisor.
Pre-K Counts is a state funded program for 3-, 4-, and 5-year-olds who aren’t yet kindergarten eligible. The goal of the program is to get the students kindergarten ready, not just academically, but also socially and emotionally. Their teachers are certified in early childhood education and hold a valid teaching certificate. They follow a state mandated curriculum and they add social-emotional components to their curriculum to benefit their students the most. “I feel like people don’t really understand what we do – even our program as a whole, we’re still getting word out to CSIU and the school districts,” says Christina Moser, the Program and Recruitment coordinator for Pre-K Counts. They’ll soon be expanding to serve in Millville and adding another classroom to Warrior Run!
Head Start and Early Head Start
Northumberland Head Start and Early Head Start are federally funded, comprehensive child development program for low-income families with children younger than the age of 5. However, it’s reach is much wider than just it’s participants. This program benefits public schools that receive children better prepared for school. The community also benefits from the parents that have gained personal goals of self-sufficiency. “I don’t think people realize that our program is 90% below the poverty level and the stress that it puts on families,” said Patricia Edwards, Head Start Program Manager. Head Start and Early Head Start do their best to offer these children and their families the opportunities they deserve.
The goal for Early Intervention is to work on the needs identified by the family and assessment team for the student. Those areas could be communication, cognitive skills, gross motor, fine motor, social/emotional, or any additional area in one of the 13 categories under IDEA (Individual with Disabilities Education Act). This year there has been over 400 evaluations. This program is not income-based, instead it is based on the physical need of the students. Early Intervention serves children in their homes, daycare settings, private pre-schools, federally funded childcare programs, or wherever necessary. They are growing from six to eight Early Intervention programs, so 108 students have grown to 144!
Each of these programs plays a part in making sure every child has the opportunity for success. Specifically, these programs focus on low-income families and children with developmental delays or disability classifications through IDEA. Everyone in this department is so passionate about their students and they work together to make sure the children in these programs have the resources they need to be successful.
Written by Briana Shervinskie, a CSIU Summer 2018 Communications Intern. She is from Sunbury and is a junior at Capital University in Columbus, Ohio. She is a dual major in Public Relations and Organizational Communication with a minor in Public Speaking. Having completed the CSIU internship, she is also considering a minor in Journalism.