Healthy Start partners with school district, foundations to promote early learning

988891_925605424128051_2117614292118537984_nThousands of the highest-risk babies in the Duval County Healthy Start program will get a head start on learning as part of a new initiative, Happy Birthday, Graduate!

The early learning initiative aims to shrink the word, school readiness and educational attainment gaps in Jacksonville’s Health Zone 1 by providing families with materials to encourage early literacy and language, social and emotional motor development and  family engagement. Healthy Start care coordinators will distribute resource kits during home visits to 5,000 families.

Happy Birthday, Graduate! is funded by the Chartrand Family Fund at the Community Foundation for Jacksonville, with matches from the Duval County Public Schools (DCPS), Baptist Health, the Jaguars Foundation and Winn-Dixie. The resource packets include:

The initiative was announced on March 2 — the National Read Across America Day and the birthday of beloved children’s book author Dr. Seuss.