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Transforming a Generation: 90% Literacy by Third Grade
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Taylor Walker, Tara Miranda, Maureen Nicolace, LaTanya Gibson, Christine Ryall, kayla poindexter, Guillermina Walker, Christy Baer, Heather Thompson, Sharon Delo, Vero Beach Police Department, mary kannapes, Rose Brickles, Ramon Echeverria, Heather Young, Barbara Johnson, Robyn Bethel, Nicolas ospina de la hoz, Cynthia Jorgensen, test test, Gisele Parker, Heather Thompson, Emily Jarrett, ggdxfg fdgfh, Liane McMullen, Sterling Bobbitt , Casey Dunn, Katrena McMahan, Laura Zorc, Kidz Closet Charities, Deirdre Creech, audrey colonna, Diane Mahan, Lisa Wheeler, Literacy Services, Karen Taylor, TLA, Wendi Adams, Kelley Williams, Debra Barnesd, Susan Del Tufo, Jeff Miller, Nancy Prizito, Tammy Eriksen, Amanda Acker, Jeanne Prince, Laura McGill, Vero Beach Magazine, Linda Condit, Kim Klaus, Maria Ortiz, Margaret Dawson-Brown, Tisa Blidgen, Kelly Sartain, Teri Barenborg, Marsha Van Arman, FRAN PERKINS, maria marron, Hollie McDougall, Amanda Emanuel, Sue Sharpe, Kristi Challenor, Carolina Rojas, Susan Del Tufo, Dr. Connie Proskovec, VBKA, Bobbie Donelson, Jayne Becker, East Coast Earthworks & Excavating, briana carter, Leslie Jones, Therese Victoria, Mary Ann Kalin, Janie Graves Hoover, Lydia Galbraith, Sherrie Hale, JOY VANHORN, Bridgette Diskin, Traci McGough, Clare Hughes, Raquel Searcy, Stacey Fletcher, hannah kauferh, Gifford Youth Activity Center, Joy Lukomski, Teri Dugan, maria miranda, STEPHANIE CLARK, Patricia Mandell, Doug Glenn, Jessica Cox, Thomas Moore, Dr. David Christiansen, Gretchen DiVincenzo, hannah kaufeh, Kelly Palmer, Nancy Blessing, LaTanya Morgan, Fourth Quadrant Partners, Ramon Echeverria, Heather Quigley, Tina Campbell, GoldenTabs VlNDAmqBXuOUgPSzn, Patricia Beaudoin, Donna Hedgecock, Leslie Connelly, Sandy Hamrick, Mike Gaudio, Margaret Autullo, Susan Rosier, sharon butler, Tirso Moreno, charlene bentien, Ralph Sunshine Acquisitions, Christine Sturgeon, Michael Van Houten, Mary Laquidara, elizabeth bahl, Boys & Girls Clubs of Indian River County, Jill Truax, Maria Alvarez, Randall Hunt, Emilia Jacobs, Dasie Hope Center, Isabel Marron , Yasmin Medina, Helene Caseltine, Becky Warren, Mary Kramek, Suzi Rusin, Hayley Gondek, Nicole Piontek, Annie Brown, Christopher Cummings, Whole Child Indian River, Emily Wick, Heidi Lourie, Ramon Echeverria, Diane Donar, Narda Pitkethly, Kristin Culbreth, Sandra Daniel, Sophie Wood, Lucy Roy-Delapaz, Gloria Luna, Phoebe Beacham, Brittany Lindsey, Milli Wenzel, renee fraker, Sara Goodman, F.A.C.T. Fellsmere Action Community Team, Kay Yurigan, Devi Maharajh, Matthew McManus, Mari Seg, Cindi Ellis, Dean Stewart Photography, Lisa Segroves, sabrina fraga, Nancy De La Hoz, Dorie Shemo, Lisa Guilmette, Karen Newkirk, DOE-OEL, belinda washimgton-davis, Melinda Judson, Elizabeth Pinkney, Pamela Miller, Harvest Food & Outreach Center, Dorie Shemo, Heidi Lourie, Kim Klaus, 1 -1', Karen Disney, Lisa Barnum, Indian River County Chamber of, Kayla Chitty, Elizabeth Pinkney, ruth darrigo, Farrah Lemanski, Kelli Mejia, Lisa Guillette, Gloria Severino, Jennifer Croom, Fellsmere Police Department FPD, Helene Caseltine, Christina Lindgren, Elias Medina, Lori Nalls, tommy collettit, shelby dorris, Nancy Blessing, Sherry White, Marie OBrien, Adam Faust, Bent Pine Golf Club, Erica Thomas, Nancy Sparkman, Kim Brady, Christina Hayes, Amy Speak, Kristina Trahan, mardy hall, LaTanya Morgan, liz woody, Sharon Klein, Juelie Perry, Kevin Maloney, Kerilyn Ngom, Donna Hedgecock, Bruce Green, uritayay, Rebecca Turner, United Way of Indian River Co., Cathy Durrett-Filusch, Laurie Pedersen, Arianna Lagges, GEORGE JETT, Kathleen Hamilton, Ralph Autullo, Susan Aguirre , Natalie Arbuckle, Isabel Marron , Susan Rosier, Kaori Fischer, Edward Shanaphy, Janai Cooper, Andrea Cosner, Paige Newinski, Dee Hollenbeck, Krishna Patel, Amber Petry, Kathy Minix, Katherine Wolf, Rachel Holpfer, Ann Mathis, Alejandrina Micket, Sharon Klein, Becky Allen, Sharon Klein, Kathleen Nealy, Vero Beach Museum of Art, Dorothy Cominsky, Erin Hollander, Ana Renuart, Shannon Gillen, Kelli Mejia, Becky Levesque, kari broomell, Janet Alford, Patricia Mandell, Michele Sternberg, cheryl gondek, Courtney Mellin, AmeriCorps/Big Brothers Big Sister, Vero Equine Riding Academy , Lesley Lane, Nancy De La Hoz, Diane Bressner, Michelle Chandler, Lisa McFaland, Hope Woodhouse , Agnieszka Szymanska, Lisa Bishop, Tiffany Carlsen, Shanti Sanchez, Fidelity Investments, Linda Hammerle, JIM BATORY, parker hammond, kelly baysura, Tiffany Justice, -1' 1, Rhonda McGilberry, Kimberly Robideau, Nate & Kristen Bruckner, Growing Healthy Kids, Inc., jennifer jackson, audrey colonna, Megan Falcone, Fenia Hiaasen, Autumn Wheeler, Mindy Lessem Pollack, Jeff The Bro, 1 1, Cheryl Gondek, Christina Lindgren, Angel Maldonado, Michelle Bass, Deborah Dillon, FELLSMERE ELEMENTARY, Tabitha Johnston, Angela Bosman, Clare Hughes, allene moorehead, Fidelity Investments, Lorri Dior, Angel Maldonado, Elizabeth Falkiewicz, Kirra OBrien, Indian River Taekwondo Langlois, Lenora Ritchie, buzz wurzer, Rhonda McGilberry, ann prince, keesha trusty, -1' 1, Tanya BRAUN, The Buggy Bunch, Kerilyn Ngom, Cathryn Miquelon, Nichole Harris, Shawna Carton, Katie Collier, yaquelin andrade, Emme Scheible, Tami Haffield, ISABELLA LAGGES, Celeste McWilliams, Amanda Stevens, Healthy Families, Milli Wenzel, Crystal Gothe, Gina Sultaire, Heather Helton, 211/Help Me Grow, Jennifer Steele, Susan Del Tufo, Chuck Evans, SHARYN A HAWKER, Janet Farmer, Marta Cronin, Jennifer Seifstein, Di Pugh, Lilibeth Ballina, Mark yBzNyaFpSKdSM, Michele Smith, Pamela Prange, Elaine McGinty, Jody Houston, Kristen Jones, Stacey Klim, Tracey Barker, Jennifer Roberts, Achillies Pace, Vero Beach Museum of Art, Mary Strickler, Susan Rosier, Rebecca Blair, Debra Schroeder, Elizabeth Tetreault, Elizabeth Stenger, Keondra Eberhardt, Mark Farrell, Arlene Kahn, JIM BATORY, Carol David, Karen Newkirk, Kelly Palmer, Kathryn Perez, Jamie Stalter, Marisela Luna, Kenny Carmichael, Ronda Weaver, Samantha Breen, Louis and Sara Smith, Barneyxcq yWxcSpFGWvTabbVDxz, joshua poindexter, Annie Brown, Shariea Shoatz, janice pagan, 1 -1', Karen Malits, Jennifer Durrett, Keith Touchberry, Beth Livers, Indian River County Lawyers Auxiliary, MAry Grace Hektner, Carrie Spencer, Matt McManus, donna palmquist, Brenda Zamora, Brooke Flood, Mardy Fish Children's Foundation, Amy Kelly, Toni Reukauf, Megan Falcone, Melody M Englert, 1 1, Tessa House, Renee Lincoln, Annie Brown, Tara Luton , Judy Whalen, Christy Baer , Andrea Cosner, John obrien, Gabrielle Wagner, Kathryn Woodall, Teri Dugan, Mary Anne Sitkowski, Ashley Farruggio, yaquelin andrade, Tricia Boyle, Angela Jawhar, valerie conway, judy jones, Page Woodward, Jenna Chatfield, Carla Cundiff, carrie fernandez, Renee Boesch, Patrick Toole, Melissa Hall, Tessa Stanley, jacki decaro, Lillian Marsiglia, Socorro Luna, Kaori Fischer, jennifer roker, Bill McMullen, Sonja Phillips, jorge luis ramirez, tommy collettit, sharon richards, Alaina McCloud, mardy hall, Brittany Bailey, shelby dorris, matt KdPIOvmNNItBy, Theresa Wagner, Mary Graves, Liz Tetreault, Susan Del Tufo,

Bosses for Babies

The Learning Alliance (TLA) is the first organization in Indian River County to join a statewide movement of an increasing number of businesses supporting families through the Children’s Movement of Florida’s “Bosses for Babies” initiative. In doing so, they are inspiring and encouraging others to follow suit. The Learning Alliance invites other community businesses to join the “Bosses for Babies” initiative because “when businesses support families, everyone wins.” Visit bossesforbabies.com for more information.

Each year, about 200,000 children head to kindergarten in Florida, and nearly half of them are not ready to learn. The Moonshot Literacy Movement created in Indian River County in 2012 has set a goal for children to be ready for kindergarten with 90% of them reading on level by the end of third grade. 

This is our “Moonshot Moment” goal, as we are working to make IRC a leading literacy capital of the nation! The “Bosses for Babies” initiative is in direct support of this Moonshot movement, because it promotes the role business leaders can play in transforming the next generation, whether through community involvement, family-friendly practices in their businesses, or by using their voices to stand up for these children and their families.

The “Bosses for Babies” initiative brings together business champions for early childhood, highlighting the many ways companies can make an impact and inspire others to take action. Bosses like Barbara Hammond, TLA CEO and co-founder, understand that investing in young children and families is an investment both in a business’ bottom line and community prosperity.

The Florida Chamber has shared the importance of early learning as a critical factor to Florida’s talent pipeline. When businesses in our county are interviewing potential hires, they want to know about the schools, parks, health care and factors related to their families. Our Moonshot Community is working together to build a literacy capital of the nation, and the “Bosses for Babies” program supports this by encouraging a family-friendly work environment. Our hope is that over time, these family-friendly policies will proliferate and become the norm.

Hammond is the mother of two boys whose life stories inspired her to start The Learning Alliance and the birth of the community-wide Moonshot Moment literacy goal which has grown into a county-wide Moonshot Literacy Movement.

Before starting The Learning Alliance, Hammond was board chair of the Mental Health Association in Vero Beach for 10 years. In that experience, Hammond understands that supporting children is undoubtedly tied to supporting their greatest teachers, their parents. As a parent herself, she relates to many of the challenges and struggles that parents face and has pledged her support to help create a workplace conducive to supporting children and their families.

The latest data shows Florida’s kindergarten readiness rate sitting at 53%. This means nearly 90,000 children entering the K-12 system are deemed “unready,” and already falling behind at a critical time in their learning and development. Research tells us it’s difficult to catch up, so we need to do a better job supporting children and families in the early years.

“This is a natural partnership,” said Hammond as The Learning Alliance is already committed to improving education for ALL children by focusing on kindergarten readiness, school and classroom support, extended learning, and community engagement as the managing partner of the Moonshot Moment Literacy Movement.

By uniting an entire community to reimagine education, we are working together to cultivate literate, creative, and compassionate citizens who will improve our world. As part of The Learning Alliance’s work to create a better tomorrow by taking a stand for our children today, they have committed to these Bosses for Babies pillars.

- Start the conversation. Be vocal when you are prioritizing family so others know it’s part of your culture. Ask employees about their families and their child care choices; listen.

- Give or volunteer. Support an early learning center in your neighborhood. Sponsor an event in your community promoting early literacy, children’s health, or support for parents of young children.

- Share community resources. Make information and resources available for parents, caregivers, or grandparents in your organization. Host an internal lunch & learn about early childhood.

- Advocate. Use your voice to elevate these issues in your community and influence decisions in Tallahassee. You can also join the Florida Chamber’s Business Alliance for Early Learning to engage with a network that cares about the link between early learning and Florida’s future.

The Learning Alliance invites other community businesses to join the Moonshot Literacy Movement by becoming a “Bosses for Babies” business, because “when businesses support families, everyone wins.”

Visit bossesforbabies.com for more information or contact Marie O’Brien at mobrien@thelearningalliance.org.