Wellbeing (e.g. Youth, Community, Mental)
Sharing Session - 60 Minutes
The Birth to Age 8 Initiative brings local school districts, nonprofits, and Dakota County Community Services, Public Health, and Social Services together to assure children reach key developmental milestones. It aims to identify more at-risk children and families early and connect entire families to the necessary supports to succeed. Research shows how school readiness plays a significant role in future job and economic success.
This session will share the process of bringing private and public partners to the table, will touch on lessons learned, and explain the collaborative process to create tools and systems for information sharing. The successful referral process between the County’s Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program and school districts has resulted in an increase of kids getting connected: 67% of kids referred through WIC were previously unknown to the four participating school districts. This process reduced the number of “kindergarten surprises” and the number of families missing out on important resources and services. Consistent messaging to encourage preschool screening has also resulted in an increase in the number of children being screened earlier.
Currently, the main focus is on the development of the Birth to Age 8 data-sharing and tracking system. Program staff has been providing preliminary input to the developers based on sample user interfaces. Piloting and beta testing of the data-sharing and tracking system will occur in early of 2019, with anticipated roll out for use of all partners in April.