DANVILLE — A nonprofit group focused on childhood services has rebranded to reflect a new regional reach.
When the calendar flipped to July, Smart Beginnings Danville Pittsylvania became the Center for Early Success. Its mission of caring for and educating children from birth to age 5 remains the same, but it now has a broader geographic stamp.
While based in Danville, the center has expanded to serve 16 localities in Central and Southern Virginia. Earlier this year, the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation announced the creation of Ready Regions, a network designed for coordination and accountability to early education programs in every community across the commonwealth.
It was launched in wake of the coronavirus pandemic and divides the state into nine regions. The leading facilities in those areas will help to coordinate programs for the youngest of learners.
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Locally, Regions Ready Southside has a grant to provide more than $1 million in annual funding. In addition to Danville, the Center for Early Success serves Lynchburg and the counties of Amelia, Amherst, Appomattox, Bedford, Brunswick, Campbell, Charlotte, Cumberland, Halifax, Lunenburg, Mecklenburg, Nottoway, Pittsylvania and Prince Edward.
The regional leadership role makes the center responsible for implementing new quality standards and collection of data across all publicly funded early education providers, including Head Start, public schools, private centers and family day homes, a news release reported.
“Ready Regions will help communities be accountable for their programs and systems to prepare children for success, as well as enabling families to choose the early childhood education options they want and need,” Kathy Glazer, president of the Virginia Early Childhood Foundation, said. “We appreciate the support of the legislature and the governor to establish this public-private regional network that will strengthen Virginia’s early childhood education system, ensuring quality, affordable access for all families.”
In an effort to boost resources and services for families with young children, the Center for Early Success will partner with parents, school divisions, social and human services agencies, quality improvement networks, early childhood education programs and businesses, the release stated.