One of the biggest challenges facing the Greenfield Collaborative Action Team was where to start with a project for the long-term goal of improving early education. Michelle Slade, Chief Strategist, explains that in meetings and conferences, the clear choice was Kindergarten registration. “One of the challenges that came up around Kinder-readiness was that families were registering children late,” says Slade, “and then that would really impact the school processes of assessment, classroom placement, etc.” The team seized the opportunity and created a Kindergarten Registration festival.
This first year was a great success, and the team realized they could find where their students were coming from, their health history, and what sort of Pre-K schooling they had experienced. A survey was developed, and the school district was provided with all this information.
The Festival also includes on-site immunizations for those students who are behind on their shots. This prevents any further delay in registration.
The medical exam also includes vision and hearing screenings.
The festival focuses on a student centered family, making sure that the family is just as involved with the process as the students.
The team measures success in the number of families reached and students registered successfully. While their goals change with new obstacles and experiences, this remains their core ideal.
Why This Matters
One of the factors in late registration that the festival would address would be immunization; many parents were unaware of this requirement and affordability and access were scarce.
The team aims to keep learning from year to year. With the first festival, they learned they needed more information on the students’ backgrounds in order to give the schools the information they require.
From the second year, they realized that a medical booth in the middle of a kid-friendly festival was not going to be a huge hit; thus, they began to promote the hours of operation of the local immunization clinics.
Parents of kinder-ready students.
Greenfield Collaborative Action Team works closely with the school districts to determine the information that they require to enroll students.
The team also involves students and parents in the process, and make sure that local clinics who provide immunizations are involved and promoted to the families.
Greenfield Collaborative Action Team