13 Local Early Childhood Programs to Participate in Continuous Quality Improvement Cohort

Thirteen programs serving Guilford County young children and families will participate in a two-year continuous quality improvement (CQI) effort in partnership with Ready for School, Ready for Life (Ready Ready) and Root Cause.  Each participating program will receive technical assistance to strengthen capacity around collecting, analyzing and using data in programmatic decision-making.

Together, the cohort serves more than 23,000 children prenatally to age five. The programs in the first cohort include:

  • Adolescent Parenting Program, YWCA High Point
  • Adopt-a-Mom, Guilford County Coalition on Infant Mortality
  • Bringing Out the Best, UNC-Greensboro, The Center for Youth, Family and Community Partnerships
  • Care Coordination for Children (CC4C), Guilford County Department of Health and Human Services
  • Early Head Start, Guilford Child Development
  • Family Connects, Guilford County Department of Health and Human Services
  • Healthy Start, Family Service of the Piedmont
  • NC Infant Toddler Program: Children’s Developmental Services Agency, NC Department of Health and Human Services
  • Parents as Teachers Guilford
  • Pregnancy Care Management, Guilford County Department of Health and Human Services
  • Teen Parent Mentor Program, YWCA Greensboro
  • WIC, Guilford County Department of Health and Human Services
  • Wise Guys, Children’s Home Society

“Guilford has built a vision for a stronger and more connected system of care to improve outcomes for families and our youngest children,” said Mary Herbenick, executive director of Ready Ready. “This continuous quality improvement effort helps programs invest in their own development, get focused on outcomes they will deliver individually and together, and to make data-driven decisions that will positively impact Guilford County’s infants, toddlers, preschoolers, their families, and our community.”

A CQI Task Force advised the cohort selection process. CQI Task Force members include representatives from Cone Health Foundation, Guilford Education Alliance, Nehemiah–The Leadership Group, Partnership for Children of Guilford County, The Foundation for a Healthy High Point, United Way of Greater Greensboro and United Way of Greater High Point.

Each provider will work with a Root Cause coach, a national leader in helping organizations achieve better outcomes to assess strengths and opportunities, develop a capacity improvement plan, and work together to strengthen capacity. This work is funded by The Duke Endowment as part of a multi-year effort to improve outcomes for Guilford’s youngest children and their families.

“Ultimately, we want to build a culture of continuous quality improvement across the entire early childhood program landscape”, said Susan Schwartz, Co-Chair of Ready Ready’s Board of Directors and Executive Director of the Cemala Foundation.

In addition to the cohort, early childhood programs that are not participating in the first cohort can take advantage of community-wide CQI technical assistance offerings designed with Root Cause that will begin by early 2019. As the first cohort launches, Ready Ready will evaluate timing for the launch of a second cohort.

For more information, contact: Michelle Chapin, Project Manager

Ready for School, Ready for Life

Cell: (407) 733-4573; Email: michellec@getreadyguilford.org


Ready for School, Ready for Life is a collaborative effort to build a connected, innovative system of care for Guilford County’s youngest children and their families. Its vision is that every child born in Guilford County will enter Kindergarten developmentally on track in five key areas: Physical development, Language and communication, Social-emotional development, Cognitive development and Approaches to play and learning.

This is important because 80% of brain development occurs by the time a child reaches age three.  About 45% of children in Guilford County arrive at Kindergarten developmentally with a strong likelihood that they will not read at grade level in the third grade.  Kindergarten readiness is the number one indicator of whether a child will read at grade level in the third grade.  Reading at grade level in the third grade is the number one indicator of whether a child will graduate from high school able to enjoy a successful life.

To achieve this vision, our community is transforming the early childhood system to focus on ten key priorities: Create a system of navigation so families can access right resources at right times; Scale and integrate evidence-based programs to build Prenatal to 3 continuum; Build a culture of continuous quality improvement so families are connected to high-quality programs/services; Develop an integrated data system to support navigation, effective referrals, and data-driven decision making; Leverage and expand early literacy resources from birth to age five; Make high-quality early care and education available to all families; Improve key transitions for children and families, especially the PreK to Kindergarten transition; Build responsiveness to family voice into every aspect of the system-building work; Build public will for early childhood priorities through effective community messaging and rigorous evaluation; Strengthen the backbone organization to coordinate the work.

Root Cause is a purpose-driven consulting firm whose work aims to improve the lives of more people and families. We partner with foundations, local government agencies such as school districts, and nonprofits to help create the conditions that enable fellow citizens to thrive and progress along a pathway from a healthy birth, to a quality education, to a well-paying job. Over the past 15 years, we have worked with more than 150 clients and partners to coordinate services, build capacity to measure and improve organizational and program performance, and plan for sustainable growth, with a strong focus on reducing disparities based on race, class, gender, and geography. Learn more at rootcause.org.