A child’s early years lay the foundation for success throughout the rest of his or her life. Kids who fall behind are far more likely to remain behind, struggle to move from grade to grade, and eventually drop out of high school. For families living in poverty, access to high-quality, flexible early learning opportunities are limited by cost and unpredictable job schedules. Few child care centers accommodate last-minute changes or evening and weekend hours.
When the United Way Neighborhood Network first came together in Austin, only 1% of the children living in poverty in the neighborhood had access to quality early childhood education programs and only 30% of 3rd grade students attending Chicago Public Schools in Austin were meeting state reading standards.
Through the United Way Neighborhood Network, families, community leaders, providers, and other partners have come together to address the early learning problem in Austin. They set a bold goal to provide high-quality early learning opportunities to 3,900 low income children living in the Austin community by 2025. Through thoughtful partnerships and guidance, the Neighborhood Network has increased the number of slots available to 916 and they are on a strong path toward reaching their goal!
Imagine the kind of impact achieving this goal will have on the Austin neighborhood. If thousands more children have the opportunity to start school on the path toward success, there is no limit to what they can achieve in life. Join the fight for brighter futures.