Each year, too many Michigan children enter kindergarten with previously unidentified health, social-emotional, developmental or learning problems. For many of these children, not being ready for school becomes a life-long struggle of poor academic achievement, diminished expectations and limited opportunity. Thankfully, the negative impact of the majority of these health, developmental and learning difficuties can be minimized or even eliminated with early identification and intervention.
In 2004, Governor Jennifer Granholm launched the Great Start initiative which she defined as a movement to create public understanding that learning begins at birth and that investment in early health, development and learning is crucial to the state's economic future. Since that launch, Michigan's general public is becoming increasingly aware of the unprecedented growth and development that occurs during the first five years of life, and the importance of those years to future school sucess!
In 2005, the Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC) was founded to lead the Great Start initiative. Calhoun Great Start Collaborative was funded in 2009, along with the Calhoun Great Start Parent Coalition. Governor Rick Snyder has continued the Great Start initiative, creating the Michigan Office of Great Start in 2011.
The role of the Calhoun Great Start Collaborative and Parent Coalition is to lead the coordinated effort in our community and to provide a GREAT START for every child in Calhoun County, thus assuring that every child is safe, healthy and eager to succeed in school and in life!
The Early Childhood Investment Corporation is a public corporation that provides funding and consultation to Great Start Collaboratives across the state to promote the healthy development for all Michigan children. As of April 2009, every county in Michigan is a Great Start Community!