The Early Education Funders Collaborative (the Collaborative) formed in 2014 with a vision that all students served by early childhood education providers in Metro Kansas City are kindergarten-ready and able to transition to schools that will build on that preparation through at least grade three.
Partner organizations in planning and/or funding included Francis Family Foundation, George K. Baum Family Foundation, Greater Kansas City Community Foundation, The H & R Block Foundation, Hall Family Foundation, Hispanic Development Fund, Kauffman Foundation, Sherman Family Foundation, Shumaker Family Foundation, Stanley H. Durwood Foundation, United Way of Greater Kansas City, and William G. McGowan Charitable Fund.
The Collaborative supported improvements in early childhood education systems and increased options and opportunities for families in the region.
Greater Kansas City Early Care and Education Study
Given that research shows early education programs can have an important impact on children’s school readiness and later success in life, the Early Education Funders Collaborative commissioned a landscape survey to better understand the existing early care and education programs within Jackson County in Missouri and Johnson and Wyandotte Counties in Kansas. The survey addresses children’s demographics, program characteristics, and staff characteristics to provide districts, schools, centers, funders, and supporters an opportunity to better understand early learning programs in Greater Kansas City.
Early Education Grant Fund
Established by the Collaborative, the Early Education Grant Fund supported initiatives in the Kansas City metropolitan area that increased access to high-quality early education and development programs for lower-income families and children of color. Projects funded by this program demonstrated proven or promising results in preparing students to succeed in kindergarten and beyond. The grant fund will not awards grants in 2019.
The Early Education Funders Collaborative awarded grants to 32 organizations in Greater Kansas City through the Early Education Grant Fund. These organizations used the grants, totaling more than $14 million, to support kindergarten-readiness for low-income families and children of color.