Delaware is required to complete the following as part of its Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five (PDG B-5) award:

  1. Develop, update, or implement a strategic plan – based on what is learned through a statewide B-5 needs assessment – that facilitates collaboration and coordination among existing programs of early childhood care and education in a mixed delivery system across the state designed to prepare low-income and disadvantaged children to enter kindergarten and to improve transitions from such systems into the local educational agency or elementary school (Read more here)
  2. Ensure efficient use of existing federal, state, local, and non-governmental resources to align and strengthen the delivery of existing programs; coordinate the delivery models and funding streams existing in the state’s mixed delivery system; and develop recommendations to better use existing resources
  3. Encourage partnerships among Head Start, childcare and pre-k providers, state and local governments, Indian tribes and tribal organizations, private entities (including faith- and community- based entities), and local educational agencies
  4. Maximize parental choice and knowledge about the State’s mixed delivery system of early childhood education program providers

Delaware’s long-term early childhood education goals must align with the purpose of the federal PDG B-5 grant opportunity. To that end, Delaware seeks to understand the experiences of families and early childhood professionals navigating the existing birth to five system through its comprehensive needs assessment. As a result, subsequent policy and identified solutions will be found through an analysis of the true needs of Delaware’s children and families.

This project builds on the progress Delaware has made in strengthening its services and supports for its youngest learners and their families and provides an opportunity to renew the state’s current five-year early childhood strategic plan that ended in 2018 (Sustaining Early Success, Delaware’s Strategic Plan for a Comprehensive Early Childhood System, 2013).