Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Still Time to Enroll in GSRP

There is still time to enroll your four year old in the Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP). Most preschool programs begin in the middle of September to early October. To apply for GSRP, complete an interest form at greatstartjackson.org or visit any GSRP site to complete a paper interest form.

Current location openings in Jackson County include:
·         East Jackson
·         ABC Academy - Lansing Avenue
·         Dibble Elementary
·         Hanover Horton
·         Columbia
·         Vandercook Lake
·         Western
·         Concord
·         ABC Academy – Jackson College
·         Hunt Elementary
·         Little Rainbows
·         Early Impressions
·         Phoenix – Prospect St.
·         da Vinci Primary School
·         Michigan Center
·         Napoleon

If you have any questions about the preschool enrollment process, please contact us at jcisd.gsrp@jcisd.org or 517-768-5130.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Great Start Collaborative - Name the Newsletter Giveaway!

Sadly, we have not received enough funding to sustain the Imagination Library program in Jackson County, so our monthly Imagination Library will be ending.  However, because we are still dedicated to building literacy skills in children and families, we will be adding a new literacy section to our monthly Great Start Collaborative newsletter.  To kick off this change, we are running a giveaway for a FREE bundle of children's books! 

Please help us name the new literacy section of our newsletter by filling out this poll. Your email address will then be entered into a random drawing for the books!  The poll will close on Monday, September 18th and the book winner will be notified via email by Friday, September 22nd.  Please note that the books will be geared for children ages 0-8.

Check your email in October for the new Great Start Collaborative newsletter.  If you aren't signed up to receive it yet, you can do so by following this link.

Thank you and best of luck!   

Monday, August 21, 2017

Great Start Statewide Convening

On August 8th, our Jackson Great Start team attended the Statewide Convening in Mt. Pleasant, MI. Held yearly, this all-day meeting provides an opportunity for all Collaborative staff and Parent Coalitions to network, share successes,and learn from each other.  In addition, the Office of Great Start and the Early Childhood Investment Corporation are in attendance to answer questions regarding the 2018 fiscal year.

This year, six morning workshops were offered, all geared toward strengthening team efforts and empowering parent leadership.  The titles of each session as well as a brief summary of each follows:

Kindergarten Transitions: Building a Bridge Over the Grand Canyon - Macomb, Midland, and COOR/losco Great Start Collaborative's shared successes and lessons learned for helping families transition children to kindergarten.

Engaging Parents in the Coalition - Focus was on holding successful meetings with regular attendance and engagement.  Three Parent Liaisons shared tips on engaging the community, setting up for meetings using agendas, and providing parent leadership.

The Power of Groups in Great Start - Participants learned how effective groups engage parents, community partners, stakeholders, etc.  The focus was on building positive relationships and effectively facilitating groups.

Promoting Healthy Outcomes Pregnancy through Pre-K : Representatives from Northeast 211 and MiChap Virtual offered information on how to connect families to local resources utilizing 211.  In addition, creative methods for reaching middle school students on the dangers of substance abuse before, during, and after pregnancy were presented by representatives of the Safe Journey Initiative, Bay County. 

Parent Led Strategies - Your Parent Coalition in Action! : Parent Liaisons from both Delta County and the Traverse Bay area shared their experiences for guiding parent coalitions through the Strengthening Families Assessment.  Participants left the workshop prepared, organized, and confident to support parents leading the work.  

Organize Your Team for Success :  In this workshop, Great Start Coordinators/Directors and Parent Liaisons shared staff roles, tips for staying organized, community engagement, and how to work as an effective team.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Everybody Loves a Firetruck!

Great Start Families and Community Action Agency are at it again.  We are excited to present families of young children in Jackson County with a fun and engaging Community Fair focused on safety.

This fair is a terrific opportunity for our littles to climb up on a firetruck and talk with paramedics, firefighters and police officers in a fun, non emergent and friendly atmosphere. If our children must later interact with one of them during an emergency they may feel a little better remembering these experiences.

Please mark your calendar and share with friends and neighbors. See you there!

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

FREE Breastfeeding Webinars

Breastfeeding education webinars are currently being offered for free each month. Presented by breastfeeding experts from the Michigan Breastfeeding network, the webinars will cover both clinical and community topics. The webinars will offer CERP's each month and provide continuing education for nurses on months with a clinical topic. In addition, certificates of attendance will be available for dietitians and social workers.  All webinars are also free for the general public!  

Webinars are free of charge and offered the 3rd Tuesday of every month at 1- 2 p.m. To view upcoming webinars or past webinars, click here