FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 2, 2018
News Conference Alert:
Topic: Smart Start teams with community and corporate partners to host First Lady Kristin Cooper, JD, first official visit to Winston-Salem / Forsyth County
Mrs. Cooper hosts public conversation with community and agency leaders on important pre- and early-literacy partnerships at work in community
Mayor Joines declares March 13, 2018 “Day of Community Conversation in Commitment to Grade-Level Reading”
Host: Matt, Britt, MBA
Chair, Board of Directors, Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc.
Speakers: Allen Joines, Mayor, Winston-Salem, NC (confirmed)
Mark Johnson, JD, NC Superintendent of Public Instruction (confirmed)
Cindy Watkins, President, North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc., and
Pat Danahy, Chairman of the Board, North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc., (retired CEO, Cone Mills, Inc.) (confirmed)
Kristin Cooper, JD, NC First Lady (invited)
Mark Owens, President, Winston-Salem Chamber of Commerce (invited)
Date: Tuesday March 13, 2018
Time: 1:45 p.m.
Place: Conference Center
Novant Health, Forsyth Medical Center
3333 Silas Creek Parkway
Winston-Salem, NC, 27103
Press Contact: Jackie Lofton, Deputy Executive Director
Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC) will host a news conference as part of NC First Lady Kristin Cooper’s first official visit to Winston-Salem / Forsyth County as First Lady on Tuesday March 2, 2018.
Mrs. Cooper is visiting the Twin City community to learn more about innovate initiatives underway to support important grade-level reading goals established by state and local officials, and embraced by Tar Heel families.
Mrs. Cooper begins her two-and-a-half hour visit (2.5 hrs.) at 11:00 a.m. in a public conversation with early childhood professionals and advocates who are helping to lead important local initiatives, such as Reach Out and Read (ROR), Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library (DPIL), and Book Babies. This conversation is open to the media and public.
Following her time with community members, Mrs. Cooper will enjoy a private luncheon with local corporate and individual donors and philanthropists, who are underwriting innovative investments in early education, such as Great Expectations, Project Impact, and the statewide Pathways to Grade-Level Initiative.
Immediately following the luncheon, Mrs. Cooper will support Mayor Joines, NC School Superintendent Mark Johnson, and other state and local dignitaries, as Mayor Joines publically declares Tuesday March 13 a “Day of Community Conversation in Commitment to Grade-Level Reading.”
After the news conference, Smart Start is convening a local conversation on the Pathways to Grade-Level Reading State Initiative. The grade-level reading initiative is a joint venture of BEST NC (founded by retired, local business executive, Walter McDowell), NC Child, the NC Foundation for Early Childhood, and the North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc.
The NC Pathways to Grade-Level Reading Project is creating partnerships among the state’s early learning and education, public agency, policy, philanthropic, and business leaders to define a common vision, shared measures of success, and coordinated strategies that support children’s optimal development beginning at birth.
For more information about the Pathways to Grade-Level Reading, visit http://buildthefoundation.org/pathways/.
Smart Start is a network of 75 nonprofit, local partnerships that serve all 100 North Carolina counties. This network is led by The North Carolina Partnership for Children, Inc. (NCPC) that ensures fiscal and programmatic accountability, and coordinates the statewide network to create better outcomes for children and families. Smart Start of Forsyth County, Inc. (SSFC), a Smart Start network member since 1995, is the only private organization in Forsyth County, charged by state statute, to focus on the quality and progress of the community’s early-learning system.
SSFC is committed to helping children birth to eight succeed, families thrive, and our community prosper, because, when we change the first few years, everything changes—for the better.
Children are born ready to learn, but some families lack the resources they need to help their children succeed. Parents, families, neighbors, and early childhood professionals need tools to help children succeed.
SSFC works to provide training, resources, direction, and leadership in rallying the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County community to build and sustain an affordable, equitable, high quality system of early childhood development and learning for all families.