As part of a Cooperative Agreement with the Institute of Museum and Library Services, awarded to Boston Children’s Museum to expand its existing School Readiness through Partnerships program to three new states; the Charleston County Public Library (CCPL) has been selected to engage in this work in Charleston.
This is a national effort over a three-year timeline that advances state work on behalf of young children, families, and communities. Together with participating museums and libraries Boston Children’s Museum has launched new grassroots museum and library networks in Iowa, Mississippi, and New Mexico; and will develop methods for network sustainability within and among states. Education Development Center Inc. (EDC) will serve as the third-part evaluator for the project, documenting the progress and testing the effectiveness of the model in building institutional readiness to serve all families in their regions.
Boston Children’s Museum will work with the CCPL through site visits, conference calls, webinars, and an annual leadership institute to bring states together to learn and share from each other. Individual institutions will strengthen their knowledge and skills for reaching out to and serving families, including low income and hard-to-reach families. The networks will develop and integrate systems and policies within their institutions to support this work going forward.
“We are committed to helping families build early literacy skills to prepare their children for kindergarten and help them grow into readers,” said CCPL Community Engagement Manager Devon Andrews. “Our work with Boston Children’s Museum will help us increase our reach and impact in the community and contribute to the educational success of the families we serve. This project helps us explore ways to be more accessible to all families in our community and to empower these families to be active leaders in their child’s early learning.”
The goal of the Building a National Network of Museums and Libraries for School Readiness is to amplify the strength of organizations serving children and families by forming coalitions that ensure all children in their regions, regions, regardless of socio-economic or linguistic background, have the skills needed to enter school prepared for success. Strongly aligned with the Institute of Museum and Library Services goal to build capacity for museums and libraries, the Building a National Network of Museums and Libraries for School Readiness project will engage more states and institutions nationwide in harnessing the power of museums and libraries to support school readiness.