New $100,000 focus grant to improve early childhood education
The Wood River Women’s Foundation and the Idaho Association for the Education of Young Children recently announced Kathryn Ivers as the project director of the Wood River Early Learning Collaborative.
The collaborative’s mission is to create an early-education community for all young children, especially those from underserved families in Blaine County. The organization is the result of the Wood River Women’s Foundation’s first ever Focus Grant towards closing the opportunity gap in education.
“Kathryn’s broad and unique background, which combines community psychology, human rights advocacy, nonprofit leadership and a passion for improving the lives of children and their families, makes her ideally suited to lead this effort,” said Martin Balben, Early Learning Collaborative project director at the Idaho Association for the Education of Young Children.
Ivers set about creating the initial Wood River Early Learning Advisory Council. The diverse council members draw upon their roles in early-childhood education.
“The energy and passion of the initial Advisory Council members is remarkable,” said Ivers. “Community members throughout the valley have expressed their enthusiasm, and we welcome their contributions at any time.”
Creating surveys tailored to three different types of community members is the Wood River Early Learning Collaborative’s next task. Surveys will be given to businesses, early-childcare and education providers, and families and community members to enable local data collection. The gathered data will be used to compile the Wood River Early Learning Collaborative Needs Assessment, which is anticipated to be finalized by the end of January 2023.
From there, the localized and community-driven strategic planning phase begins, with a target completion date at the end of May 2023.