Our success is measured by the results we are able to achieve. We carefully evaluate all aspects of our projects, and use that to guide our coalitions work and continually improve. 


Countywide Policy Frameworks 

Two high quality county-wide strategic policy documents, Early Childhood and School Readiness Action Agenda and the School Age Children and Youth Action Agenda developed with broad input from and endorsement by key community stakeholders

Partnerships  

Over 1,000 representatives of government, community organizations, schools, churches, businesses and citizens are working in partnership county-wide on action agenda strategies

Resource Leveraging  

SOAR policy guidance and investments have leveraged over $1,750,000 from community partners to advance the goals of SOAR Action Agendas

Early Childhood and School Readiness Action Agenda

  • Accreditation/Early Childhood Quality Support
  • Strategy in place and funding secured ($1.5 million) to assure national accreditation of 256 childcare centers by 2012.
  • Accreditation meets the requirement for the highest rating in the new state Quality Rating System
  • Accreditation process initiated for 10 family childcare homes
  • Partnership established with Family Friend and Neighbor Caregiver Support Coalition to start 10 new “Play & Learn” groups to support FFN care. Matching grants procured from Seattle and Kirkpatrick Foundations
  • Over 600 early childhood educators participated in on-going professional development activities

Transition to Kindergarten & School Readiness

  • Multi-partner Action Team created research-based School/Neighborhood Transition Team model which partners schools, parents and early childhood providers in preparing children for successful transitions to kindergarten
  • Model has been implemented successfully in 6 King County School Districts (including Seattle) and 11 elementary schools to date impacting 155 early childhood partners and 334 parents
  • Funding has been secured to expand model into 12 school districts and 25 elementary schools in 2006-07 school year, engaging 500 early childhood educators and 1,000 parents in school readiness and transition activities
  • Partnership established with City of Seattle Division of Early Learning and Family Support/Early Learning Networks to implement model in 5 southeast and southwest Seattle elementary schools during 2006-07 in support of City’s Family and Education Levy school readiness efforts engaging 100 early childhood educators and 200 parents
  • Over 200 additional educators have been trained on implementing School/Neighborhood Transition Team model in community-based trainings
  • Model presented at Washington State School Directors’ Association Conference in Spokane (November 2006)
  • SOAR has entered into a partnership with Puget Sound Educational Service District to convene a “Transition Summit” for King County School Districts and other stakeholders to create county-wide partnerships and best practice approaches to school readiness and kindergarten transitions

Cultural Competency
  

  • Multi-partner Action Team initiated public education campaign regarding developmental delays and available services; targeted toward English, Spanish, Vietnamese and Somali speaking communities
  • Developed and implemented parent education and support programs for over 500 parents county-wide, including immigrant and refugee communities (FACES groups)
  • Developed innovative model for organizing Latino parents to interface with government and schools around children and youth issues (FACES)
  • Multicultural Youth Leadership Curriculum developed, tested and disseminated in partnership with Washington State University

School Age Children and Youth Action Agenda
 

  • School Age Children and Youth Action Agenda completed in May 2006
  • School age children and youth community event attended by 175 stakeholders (May 2006)
  • Regional discussions held to identify community-specific issues/priorities and initiate partnerships to advance goals of Action Agenda
  • Partnerships created with Washington Afterschool Network and local legislators to advance support for afterschool programming for children and youth in 2007 legislative session
  • Partnership created with Washington State Mentoring Partnership and King County Mentoring Coalition to promote and expand research-proven mentoring services in King County
  • 25 mini-grants allocated to community-based partnerships in support of Action Agenda goals ($35,000 granted; additional $70,000 leveraged from community partners)
  • Currently building new county-wide action teams and regional partnerships

Advocacy

  • Developed a Legislative Policy Agenda and worked with partners to advocate on behalf of children and families
  • State Early Learning Department established
  • Schools extend coverage to children, birth to age three, with developmental delays
  • Additional 7,000 children state-wide receive health care coverage
  • Health co-pays for Medicaid eligible children eliminated

The Future

With SOAR partners, promote strategies and secure resources to sustain existing progress and further advance SOAR’s vision:

  • Accredit 700 family childcare homes by 2014
  • Expand “play & learn” model and other support services to 7,600 family, friend and neighbor caregivers
  • Evaluate and expand School/Neighborhood Team model to all 19 King County school districts
  • Facilitate partnerships among school districts, early childhood educators, and parents to work together to implement school readiness and transition programs
  • Universal access to developmental screenings for children birth-3 at critical age intervals
  • Expand afterschool opportunities for school-age children and youth
  • Expand service learning opportunities for school age children and youth
  • Ensure young people have a voice and influence in policy and funding decisions regarding youth
  • Strengthen the youth development field by providing opportunities for professional development, networking and visioning for  staff
  • Establish new youth engagement norms and behaviors in agencies and communities throughout King County
  • Support collaborative opportunities to demonstrate the efficacy of youth engagement