Center for Early Learning

The Center for Early Learning at Silicon Valley Community Foundation has worked to make high-quality early learning a priority since 2014.

The Center conducts research, convenes community leaders and advocates for change to ensure that young children have access to early learning opportunities and develop in health ways. The Center's work is focused in these main areas:

Strategic initiatives

The Big Lift is a collective impact collaborative led by the three agencies – the Center for Early Learning, the San Mateo County Office of Education and the County of San Mateo – that are partnering with dozens of county leaders and community-based organizations to close the achievement gap and improve third-grade reading proficiency in San Mateo County. Contact Andrea Jones, initiative officer for The Big Lift, for more information.

Raising A Reader is a nationally recognized early literacy program that builds young children’s language and early literacy skills by encouraging parents to read with them. The Center provides Raising A Reader to over 300 classrooms and 6,000 children annually in San Mateo County. Contact Pat Flynn Sasso, early learning officer for Raising A Reader, for more information.

Early Learning Leadership Academy helps principals, administrators and educators develop the skills and tools to support PreK-3 communities. To participate in the 2017-18 Academy, please register by Friday, Sept. 22. The first of three sessions is on Friday, Sept. 29. The $350 participation fee is waive for participants from select districts in San Mateo County. Contact Christine Thorsteinson, PreK-3 program and research coordinator, for more information. 

Advocating for early learning

Choose Children 2018 initiative is aimed at ensuring California’s next governor is a champion for children and makes children a statewide priority. Research is clear that statewide investments in early childhood policies and programs can help stem poverty. However, California’s investments in early childhood policies and programs do not match the need. Your donation to this effort will be matched dollar for dollar by a generous investment from the J.B. and M.K. Pritzker Family Foundation. Contact Pete Weldy, external relations officer, for more information. 

Silicon Valley Children's Advocacy Network (SVCAN) is a broad-based coalition of advocates representing Silicon Valley business, faith-based, education, nonprofit, parent and local government organizations. Since 2015, SVCAN has regularly convened to amplify the region’s collective voice in Sacramento and address some of the greatest challenges facing California’s children and families.

Convenings and collaboration

Raising of Silicon Valley series: The Center for Early Learning engaged in a public education campaign that mirrored the national Raising of America campaign. The purpose of the Raising of Silicon Valley series is to elevate critical issues that are impacting Silicon Valley parents of young children today. This campaign features a number of high-profile convenings focused on encouraging cross-sector dialogue on timely issues such as paid family leave, early learning technology and universal access to child care.

Research


Developmental Screening


Facilities Report

California Pediatrician Survey on Early Childhood Developmental Screening

The Center for Early Learning is gathering data on developmental screening efforts in Silicon Valley and will be using these findings for policy and advocacy efforts that lead to universal childhood developmental screenings.

San Mateo County Child Care and Preschool Facilities Task Force Report

This task force recommends a unified and coordinated countywide effort be developed to focus solely on the development and sustainability of child care and preschool facilities in San Mateo County. Learn more 



Kindergarten Readiness Guide


Measuring School Readiness


Parent Story Project

Kindergarten Readiness Guide

This guide gives California families tools and tips to prepare their children for a successful launch into kindergarten. Read the full guide above or watch the video series.

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Measuring Children's Readiness for School

Parent Story Project

This is the first-ever regional study that investigates what it is like to be a parent of a young child in San Mateo and Santa Clara Counties. Parent perspectives are captured in this video and in the full report.

View SVCF's publications archive for more