Teachstone highlights the professional development work of SSFC in Forsyth County

SSFC works closely with Teachstone to provide personalized training for early educators throughout Forsyth County. One specialized Teachstone program we offer is My Teaching Partner, which enables a one-on-one learning opportunity for teachers to receive immediate feedback and engage in truly reflective practices.

Recently, the new UNC-TV program ncIMPACT focused on the growth of the Pre-K system in Forsyth County and recognized SSFC as a major contributor to that progress. The service we provide through My Teaching Partner was shown to make a difference to those teachers who have participated.

Teachstone heard about the great things happening in our area and wrote a post about our progress. Check out the full article here: https://bit.ly/2Fe8IW5. You can also see the full ncIMPACT episode while you’re there!

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. Announces Resignation of CEO/Executive Director and Appointment of Interim CEO/Executive Director

WINSTON-SALEM, N.C., Mar. 15, 2019 – Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC), a nonprofit organization leading early childhood development and education initiatives in Forsyth County, announced today that Lawrence “Larry” Vellani has resigned as CEO/Executive Director. “We are very grateful for the service and passion Larry gave to Smart Start and to the youngest children of our community during his more than seven years of leadership,” said Board Chair, Mr. Matt Britt. “He leaves us well-positioned for the next stage of our development.”

The Board of Directors is expected to officially appoint Jackie Lofton as the interim CEO/Executive Director at their next full board meeting on March 20, 2019. “As we begin our national search for a new CEO/Executive Director, we express appreciation to Jackie for her willingness to serve in the interim role. Our goal as an organization is to provide the best possible educational experience for the birth to Kindergarten population in Forsyth County, and we will continue to strive for those results.”

Mrs. Lofton has been at SSFC since 2007, most recently holding the position of Deputy Executive Director. She is a 30-year veteran of the childcare industry and is a leader in the local nonprofit sector, having served on numerous boards, taskforces, and committees. She represents SSFC as a co-convening organization of the Birth-to-3rd Action Network of Forsyth County and is managing the Help Me Grow initiative pilot program in Winston-Salem.

About Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc.

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. works to provide training, resources, direction, and leadership in rallying the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County community to build and sustain an affordable, equitable, high-quality system of early childhood development and learning for all families.

Smart Start is a network of 75 nonprofit, local partnerships that serve all 100 North Carolina counties. This network is led by The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. that ensures fiscal and programmatic accountability and coordinates the statewide network to create better outcomes for children and families. Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc., a Smart Start network member since 1995, is a leading organization in Forsyth County focused on the quality and progress of the community’s early-learning system.

Media contact:

Mark Palmer, Director of Advancement
markp@smartstart-fc.org
336-714-4350 (office)
636-233-2514 (cell)

The Imagination Library train is coming to YOUR home!

Dolly Parton launched her Imagination Library in 1995 to benefit the children of her home county in East Tennessee. Dolly’s vision was to foster a love of reading among her county’s preschool children and their families by providing them with the gift of a specially selected book each month. By mailing high quality, age-appropriate books directly to their homes, she wanted children to be excited about books and to feel the magic that books can create. Moreover, she could help ensure that every child would have books, regardless of their family’s income.

In 2017, North Carolina’s state lawmakers included $3.5 million in the first year and $7 million in the second year of the state budget for Smart Start to administer Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library (DPIL) across North Carolina.

The Imagination Library provides children a free book, delivered to their home each month free of charge, from their birth to their fifth birthday. Educational and literary experts help the Imagination Library select specific, high-quality books based on the child’s age and the family’s language of choice.

There are approximately 27,000 children residing in Forsyth County eligible to enroll in the Imagination Library. SSFC and its community partners are committed to enrolling all eligible children, while educating families on the importance of daily reading with their children, as well as the importance of habits of life-long reading.

CLICK HERE TO CHECK ELIGIBILITY AND REGISTER YOUR CHILD

 

SSFC welcomes leading community members to its board of directors

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC) received eight new community leaders to its Board of Directors at its bimonthly corporate meeting on Sept. 19. These members bring a wide range of expertise in the fields of child and family development, education, human resources, and law enforcement. The organization also added three staff members to expand its teaching and learning services and fundraising/marketing capabilities.

The new SSFC Board members are:

  • Kelley Bendheim – Early Learning Coordinator, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools
  • Deborah L. Best, Ph.D. – William L. Poteat Professor of Psychology, Wake Forest University
  • Tembila Covington – Urban Agriculture Program Assistant, NC Cooperative Extension, Forsyth County Center
  • Dr. C. Anthony Jones, Jr. – Senior Minister, United Cornerstone Missionary Baptist Church
  • Cleopatra Morrison – Child and Family Support Team Social Worker, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools
  • Deborah Reynolds – Human Resource Consultant, Marsh McLennan Agency
  • Wilson S. Weaver, II – Assistant Police Chief, Winston-Salem Police Department
  • Susanne Wilkinson – Human Resources Consulting Partner, Wells Fargo

“We are excited and grateful to have this diverse group of talented and knowledgeable individuals join our Board,” said SSFC Board Chair Matt Britt. “They will add valuable perspectives and insights to an already strong team. We look forward to working with them as Smart Start continues its leadership in Forsyth County’s early childhood development and learning efforts.”

SSFC also elected a new Executive Committee of its Board. This committee now includes:

  • Matt Britt, Chair
  • Sheryll Strode, Vice-Chair
  • Diana Santos Johnson, Secretary
  • Bennett Bruff, Treasurer
  • Elizabeth Dampier, Past-Chair
  • Doug Punger, At-large
  • Kelley Bendheim, At-large & NC Pre-K Committee Co-Chair
  • Sabrina Hinton, At-large & Development Committee Chair

The board enjoyed valedictory words from Alvin Atkinson, one of the longest serving board leaders, who completed two, full consectuive three year terms on the board, including four years as treasurer. In special prepared remarks, Alvin shared, ” Smart Start’s commitment to equity, and making a difference in our community for ALL children was perhaps the singlest biggest reason I continued to make Smart Start a priority in my civic work. I’m counting on this board to continue that commitment in the months and years ahead. Equity has never been more important to our families, nor to our social and econmic progress.”

Matt Britt (right) recognizes out-going, senior board member and former treasurer, Alvin Atkinson, with a gift book, signed by all the staff and officers, “The Very Hungry Caterpillar.”

Along with the Board additions, SSFC has increased its staff to better meet the needs of early childhood centers and the families they serve.

  • Makisha Burns, most recently an employee of Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools, joins as a Pre-K Transition Specialist providing on-site support to families whose children are moving from Pre-K to Kindergarten, as well as training to early education teachers throughout the county.
  • Mark Palmer, formerly an employee of Forsyth Country Day School, fills the new role of Director of Advancement overseeing the fundraising and marketing efforts for the programs and initiatives currently managed by Smart Start.
  • Dana Sandknop, a recent graduate of UNC-Greensboro, serves as an Engagement Specialist assisting families and educators in enrolling and participating in family support, consumer, and professional education and training.

“These newest members of our staff will allow us to better serve our clients and to increase the good we can do for the youngest children of Forsyth County. We are thrilled to have their expertise and energy, and know they will have an immediate, positive impact,” said Larry Vellani, SSFC’s Executive Director.

All SSFC Board of Directors meetings are open to the public and are held from 12:00 pm – 1:30 pm on the third Wednesday of November, January, March, May, July, and September at the Smart Start office, 7820 North Point Blvd., Winston-Salem. For more information about the new Board members, employees, and SSFC programs, please visit smartstart-fc.org.

About Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc.

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. works to provide training, resources, direction, and leadership in rallying the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County community to build and sustain an affordable, equitable, high-quality system of early childhood development and learning for all families.

Smart Start is a network of 75 nonprofit, local partnerships that serve all 100 North Carolina counties. This network is led by The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. (NCPC) that ensures fiscal and programmatic accountability and coordinates the statewide network to create better outcomes for children and families. Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC), a Smart Start network member since 1995, is a leading organization in Forsyth County focused on the quality and progress of the community’s early-learning system.

Media contact:

Mark Palmer, Director, Advancement & Communications
markp@smartstart-fc.org
336-714-4350 (office)
636-233-2514 (cell)

Smart Start Prepares for 2019 – 2021 Biennial Bidding and Allocations Cycle

... Request for Proposal (RFP) awaits response from early childhood organizations … attention to bidding deadlines remains critical …

Legal Ad

Request for Proposals (RFP)

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC) is soliciting proposals from agencies interested in providing services that contribute to the well-being and optimal development of young children, birth to 5. Services must be evidence-based or evidence-informed and address at least one of three funding areas: (1) Early Care & Education (2) Family Support (3) Early Literacy.  This RFP is for a two year grant period (July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2021).  To be considered for funding, interested applicants must attend a grant information webinar on 9/12/18, 3:30 p.m. To register for webinar, contact Charlette Lindell at 336-714-4347; CharletteL@SmartStart-FC.org.

Additional information and documentation, useful in participating in the 2019 – 2021 allocation and bidding process, follow below:

More about Evidence-Based and Evidence-Informed Programs and Practices:

Smart Start prepares to add a development professional

… are you ready to help take Forsyth County’s local Smart Start Partnership to the next level of resource development, as well as resource delivery?

SSFC is looking for a committed friend-raising and fundraising professional to join its senior management team. Are you that person?

SSFC is an equal and equitable opportunity employer, focused on consultation, collaboration, performance, and results.

For more information, contact Jackie Lofton, Deputy Executive Director at JackieL@SmartStart-FC.org, or call 336.714.4349.

View position description Development Coordinator 2018_0619e.

 

Beth Day-Hairston, teacher-scholar, keynotes Raising Forsyth Breakfast Thursday May 10

… Talitha Vickers, WXII news anchor, serves as breakfast emcee and host …

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC) will host its annual breakfast, “Raising Forsyth,” on Thursday May 10, 7:30 – 9:00 a.m. at Bridger Field House at the BB&T Field on Deacon Drive in Winston-Salem. Talitha Vickers, WXII 12 news anchor, will host the morning program that will include a breakfast keynote by Beth Day-Hairston, PhD, chair WSSU’s department of education.

Beth Day-Hairston, PhD

“Raising Forsyth” “our children, our quality, our eyes to a better future,” according to board chair Matt Britt, “has been our story for more than 20 years. And it remains our compass for the future as we approach a quarter-century of service and advocacy in our community!”

Originally incorporated in December 1994 as the Forsyth Early Education Partnership, SSFC provides tools, training, resources, and leadership to help families help children thrive, while rallying the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County community to build and sustain an affordable, equitable, high quality system of early childhood development and learning for all children.

For further information, as well as information on tickets and sponsorships, visit Eventbrite, or contact Jackie Lofton, 336. 714.4349.

xxx

Smart Start is a network of 75 nonprofit, local partnerships that serve all 100 North Carolina counties. This network is led by The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. (NCPC) that ensures fiscal and programmatic accountability, and coordinates the statewide network to create better outcomes for children and families. Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC), a Smart Start network member since 1995, is the only private organization in Forsyth County, charged by state statute, to focus on the quality and progress of the community”™s early-learning system. 

SSFC is committed to helping children birth to eight succeed, families thrive, and our community prosper, because, when we change the first few years, everything changes””for the better.

Children are born ready to learn, but some families lack the resources they need to help their children succeed. Parents, families, neighbors, and early childhood professionals need tools to help children succeed.

SSFC works to provide training, resources, direction, and leadership in rallying the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County community to build and sustain an affordable, equitable, high quality system of early childhood development and learning for all families.

None of our work would be possible without the generous support of our many sponsors & donors!

“RAISING FORSYTH” SPONSORSHIPS & DONATIONS
(by level & alpha)

NEXT GENERATION- $5,000

Liberty Hardware Manufacturing Corp.


TOMORROW’S CHILD – $1,000

Allegacy Federal Credit Union

Elite Benefits Group

Kaplan Early Learning Company

Peggy Boswell & Larry Vellani


TODAY’S CHILD- $500

BB & T

Brookstone Technology Services, LLC

A Child’s World Learning Centers

Diana Santos-Johnson & Sheryll Strode

Doug & Leila Punger

HouseMaster Property Inspection Services

Jackie Lofton

Joanna & Matt Britt

Leila & Doug Pnger

Lynn Silkstone

Sabrina Hinton (North Point Academy & TLC Learning Center) & Theressa Stephens (Church Childcare & Church Child Care Plus)
                 

SSFC Staff

Vela Strategic Marketing & Maxx Kinder Kollege
      

Waughtown Kids R Us Childcare Center

 

Additional Financial Donations & In-Kind Support

Hanesbrands, Inc.

Hatch Early Learning

Joan Troost

Michael Lawless

The Speech Lady, PLLC

Now Hiring!

Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc., is accepting resumes for a full time position to provide consultation and technical assistance to early educators, as well as coordinate the professional development and training for the early childhood community in Forsyth County.

This position requires a BA or BS in early childhood education. Master’s degree and B-K license preferred. Experience working in an early childhood setting or working with early educators, and excellent written and oral communication skills are required.

Send cover letter and resume to:
Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc.
7820 North Point Blvd., Suite 200, Winston-Salem, NC 27106 ATTN: TLS/Whitley

Email to:
jennyw@smartstart-fc.org  or vanessasw@smartstart-fc.org

Forsyth County Pre-K Program … Time to Apply for 2018-2019 School Year!

… 2018-19 application available for viewing and downloading below …

English
18 19 English Pre K Application

Español
18 19 Solicitud Español para Pre-K

For further information in English, contact 336.714.4379 / Para más información en español, contacte 336.714.4369!

 

Smart Start renews RFA for expedited roll-out of Imagination Library

SSFC, Inc., in cooperation with the NC General Assembly and NCPC, Inc., is seeking applications from non-profit or public organizations in Forsyth County to expedite the implementation of the Dolly Parton Imagination Library (DPIL) in all zip codes of Forsyth County on or before December 18, 2017.

Interested organizations must submit a letter of intent co-signed by the chief executive and chief volunteer officer of the organization by noon on Friday December 8, and the completed application by noon on Thursday December 14.

Applications must include all necessary attachments and documentation. The RFA review committee will provide notice of the awardee to SSFC by Friday December 15, 2017, which will forward the notice immediately to the implementing organization.

The implementing organization will receive access to a one-time award of $20,000, payable over the course of two years (December 2017 through June 2019) to support implementation work. Thereafter, the implementing organization will receive $0.15 per child per month in quarterly installments for each correctly-registered child (up to a maximum of $1.80 per annum per child). The availability of the per-child stipend to the implementing organization after June 2019 is subject to subsequent General Fund support in the next biennium.

The expedited implementation plan must include provisions for the following:

  • Implementation of DPIL in all 24 Forsyth County zip codes by December 18, 2017.
  • Reasonable plan for program sustainability after June 2019.
  • Organizational metrics on current or previous administration of other, evidence-based or evidence-informed pre-literacy programs and early literacy book-distribution programs for children birth to five in Forsyth County.
  • Implementation consistent with the DPIL 3.0-2017 US Operations Training Manual 6 24 17.doc, including:
    a) Targets for the number of children for enrollment in DPIL each year for FY 2017-18 and for FY 2018-19.
    b) Outreach, communication, and management of book inventory in promoting aggressive recruitment of families and highly effective techniques for loss prevention of undelivered books, particularly through existing community partnerships or other business relationships.
    c) Data entry about participating children and families in the Dollywood Foundation Book Ordering System (BOS) database.
    d) Management of undelivered books from post offices and redeliver to other locations for public use on a weekly basis.
    e) Participate in NCPC’s state evaluation, in particular, NCPC’s March 2018 Implementation report to the NC General Assembly.

Please complete the on-line application survey here.

This DPIL RFA process is subject to the provisions of the “Smart Start Competitive Bidding Policy, June 13, 2017-Revised,” available upon request.

As the activating contractor for DPIL in Forsyth County, SSFC is statutorily eligible and will be submitting a competitive application for the expedited implementation of DPIL pursuant to the RFA.

For further information, submit written questions to Charlette Lindell, Director, Compliance and Quality Assurance at CharletteL@SmartStart-FC.org.