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The Early Years Count!

The Early Years Count! (EYC)
is an education initiative of the
Community Foundation of
St. Joseph County, Inc. that
is focused like a laser on raising quality in early childhood programs throughout our community.


For more information about the Early Years Count!, visit the Community Foundation's website.

The research on early childhood care and education is very clear:  high quality equals better chances for success not only in school, but throughout life.

The Early Years Count Education Initiative of the Community Foundation of St. Joseph County, coordinated by The Family Connection since 2001, is an integrated system of training, assessment and support to increase quality in early childhood programs—centers, ministries, preschools and family care homes, as well as Head Start and SBCSC elementary schools.

















Major components of the Early Years Count include:


Program & Classroom Assessments to measure quality and guide teachers. More on assessments


Coaching for early childhood teachers and directors working to improve quality in their classrooms or programs


Mini-grants for Classroom & Program Materials to ensure a high quality learning environment.

Teacher training that broadens knowledge of early childhood theory, best practices, and effective strategies.


  • HighScope Training for early childhood teachers of infants, toddlers and preschool-age children.

  • Other Trainings and Workshops to refresh, dig deeper, and explore topics relevant to early childhood educators. More on training

Quality Leadership Institute, based on training components from the McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership, to support early childhood directors working to improve program quality.

Early Childhood Lending Library of books and videos to support programs participating in the EYC early childhood community.

Education Scholarships to assist early childhood educators participating in EYC who do not qualify for other financial supports to gain a CDA, Associates degree, BA or Masters in Early Childhood Education.

If you are located in St. Joseph County and are interested in raising quality in your early childhood program, contact us today.

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