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Big Brothers Big Sisters PDF Print Email
Thursday, 16 December 2010 00:00

Big Brother Big Sister of Greater charlotte

Mommy had her best friend over today. I heard her tell mommy how excited she was that her son had finally been matched with a Big Brother. She told mommy that yesterday he took him to a basketball game and the week before that they had dinner together.

She told mommy she is seeing a big difference in his behavior because he wants to make his Big Brother proud. She is excited that through his Big Brother her son is getting to experience things she hasn’t even done. He sees his Big Brother once a week.

 
Thanksgiving Blessing Bags PDF Print Email
Wednesday, 24 November 2010 00:00

Thanksgiving is this week. We’ve been talking about being thankful and celebrating in school. On Wednesday we are having a Thanksgiving feast in class. Mom was worried we may not be able to have a feast at home. Many of our neighbors had told us that there were a lot of Thanksgiving programs unavailable this year and they were worried they would go without.

 
Charlotte's Brother Gets a Head Start PDF Print Email
Sunday, 21 November 2010 00:00

I love school but there are some days I get really sad, sometimes I don’t feel like I know as much as my classmates. Ms. Palmer, my teacher, Mrs. Sherrill, from A Child’s Place and my mom all work very hard with me to “catch up” with my classmates. Mom told Grandma that since I did not go to a preschool and she had always been working when I was younger - I missed out on learning before school.

Charlotte s Brother Gets a Head StartShe was so excited when she got a call from Ms. Burton at the Head Start program. They wanted to talk to her about enrolling my brother in their preschool program. Ms. Burton came to our house to meet our family and visit my brother. He is four and she said it was very important for him to get school experience. (Head Start is a federal program that has been in Charlotte since 1972.) It is managed locally by The Bethlehem Center of Charlotte. Head Start is a unique program because it focuses on the family not just the student.

We learned that there are 800 students on the wait list to be in Head Start. My brother is so lucky because there is a spot at the Stroud Court campus near grandma’s house. Mom was so relieved because we do not have a car and he will be able to ride the bus to the preschool. Since he is 4 and we meet a lot of the other qualifications he will be a high priority to get a spot.Charlotte Head Start Greeting

TCharlotte readinghe next week we went to visit my brother’s preschool. We met Ms. Potts who is in charge of our location. My mom was so impressed with her story, she went through the Head Start program herself. Mom says she is an inspiration. She told grandma all the staff has such passion for the success of the students and their families.

For the first time in a long time mom said she felt like there were people in our lives that really cared about us. Mom is really excited that parents play such a big role at my brother’s preschool. There are monthly parent workshops and the topics are picked by the parents of students.  (Topics included effective communication with your child, discipline and getting father’s involved.)

I am so excited for my brother to get to go to school like I do. He seems really excited to, and I can tell mom seems really happy.

 

 


 

How Can You Help?

  • There are 800 children currently on the wait list for Head Start. There is a great need for expansion. Head Start is just one of the nine programs that The Bethlehem Center of Charlotte provides to support over 1,000 children and families a day in our community. Annually The Bethlehem Center provides 300,000 meals to children and 800,000 hours of education.  There are lots of ways to donate:
  1. Participate in the Campbell’s Labels for Education program. Save your Campbell’s Labels and donate them off at 2702 Baltimore Avenue.
  2. Link your Harris-Teeter VIC card to Bethlehem Center’s Together in education account #5609.
  3. Donate items from our Wish List – it includes school supplies, computers, folding chairs, and volunteers like readers and a piano teacher.
  4. Be a sponsor – Your company could sponsor one of the annual events that include; Ride for the Kids, Run for the Kids, Annual Dinner and Annual Golf Tournament. Sponsorships range from $250 to $10,000
  5. Make a monetary donation.
  • Community Awareness – The overall goal of Head Start is to help end poverty by providing preschool children from low-income families and children with disabilities with a program that meets emotional, social, health, nutritional and psychological needs, increases social competence, and improves the chances of success in school.
  • Recruitment – Making sure eligible families get enrolled. Eligibility and enrollment information is available at The Bethlehem Center of Charlotte’s website.



Information on Head Start

Charlotte Reading at Head startCreated in 1965, Head Start is the most successful, longest-running, national school readiness program in the United States. It provides comprehensive education, health, nutrition, and parent involvement services to low-income children and their families. More than 22 million pre-school aged children have participated in Head Start.

The overall goal of Head Start is to help end poverty by providing preschool children from low-income families and children with disabilities with a program that meets emotional, social, health, nutritional and psychological needs, increases social competence, and improves the chances of success in school.

Though federally-funded, each program is required to provide a 20 percent local funding match. This nationwide program works through several major areas, including education, health and nutrition, parent involvement and social services.



 
Six Things You Should Know about Bright Beginnings PDF Print Email
Wednesday, 03 November 2010 00:00

Children of Charlotte Quick Facts

Six Things You Should Know about Bright Beginnings:

  1. Bright Beginnings is Charlotte/Mecklenburg County’s pre-kindergarten program, available free of charge to educationally at-risk four-year-old children. The program is administered by Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS).
  2. Bright Beginnings began in 1997 when the CMS Superintendent recognized the need for a program that would serve educationally at risk children who would otherwise come to school unprepared for success.
  3. Eligibility is determined through demonstrated academic need and assessed through a formal screening process.
  4. In its first year, Bright Beginnings served 1,672 children at a cost of $9.8 million. In 2010, Bright Beginnings is serving approximately 4,212 children at a cost of $31.5 million.
  5. Funding for Bright Beginnings is received from Mecklenburg County, NC’s More at Four program, Smart Start of Mecklenburg County and the federal government.
  6. Approximately 4,200 of this year’s 10,000 incoming kindergartners attended a public pre-kindergarten program in Charlotte/Mecklenburg County. There is currently a waiting list of more than 1,500 children who are eligible for Bright Beginnings.

As a Community How Can We Make Sure Every Child Starts on a Level Playing Field?

  • As the school board begins to tackle its $60 million dollar budget deficit for 2012, many fear that the Bright Beginnings programs could be targeted for significant cuts.
  • This would be a dangerous step backwards for our community’s children – one that is not even penny wise, and is certainly pound foolish.
  • The research is clear. Pre-kindergarten education is a wise investment.
  • Attend CMS school forums and contact your school board representative to and VOICE YOUR STRONG SUPPORT FOR PRE-K EDUCATION AND BRIGHT BEGINNINGS.
 


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