The nature of the Corner Counties Early Childhood Area design is such that each program component requires involvement of a variety of community stake-holders. The Corner Counties Board believes that the more people involved in working with children, the better. Greater exposure of children to helpful adults provides more opportunities for positive role-modeling, asset building, and creation of a support system that will go beyond the Early Childhood concept. Southwest Iowa’s greatest resource is the willingness of community members to work together to achieve results for children and families. The success of the Early Childhood area hinges not on having the most financial backing or the best or newest school buildings and equipment, but on building upon strengths and collaborations that have been built over the years.
The Early Childhood Area offers several collaborative and networking opportunities for community partners. All committees and subcommittees of the Corner Counties Board are posted on the area’s website a minimum of 24 hours prior to the scheduled meeting date and time.
Corner Counties Early Childhood Advisory Committee
The Early Childhood Advisory Committee was formed in January 2008 to assist the Board with the development and review of a community assessment for the purposes of identifying current community needs. Other duties of this committee have been to assist with the community resource mapping, community plan evaluation process; identification and revision of community indicators and priorities. This committee also serves as an advisory committee to the Board and provides the Board with committee reports at Board meetings. The Committee originally was meeting once per quarter, however, the committee members have recently chosen to meet every other month. The committee is comprised of: community partners, early childhood partners, DCAT/CPPC Board representatives, Early Childhood Board representatives, and other interested individuals.
Fremont County 0-5 Coalition
Southwest Iowa Home Health (SWIHH) chairs the Fremont County 0-5 Coalition that meets bi-monthly with several other agencies and organizations that provide services to families and children that reside within Fremont County. This is a large group of providers, advocates, educators and other interested individuals that meet to discuss matters that affect children birth to five and their families. The Fremont County 0-5 Coalition also allows the format to include immunization and lead coalition activities. The success of all programs and services depends on collaboration, resource and referral, and community involvement. SWIHH works closely with all the public schools in Fremont County, Kornerstone Kids Childcare, and Fremont County Head Start. Committee members include representatives of preschool, Head Start, Corner Counties Early Childhood Board, Area Education Agency, Stork’s Nest, WIC, West Central Community Action, DHS, Child Care Resource and Referral, Child Care Nurse Consultant, Child Health Specialty Clinic, George C. Grape Community Hospital, Iowa State Extension, Growing Strong Families, Faith in Action, and other local churches.
Decategorization (DCAT) and Community Partnerships for Protecting Children (CPPC)The DCAT and CPPC Board within the Early Childhood Area serves Fremont, Page, and Taylor Counties. By-laws were adopted Aug. 12, 2008, with the purpose of creating partnerships that increase connections to practices and programs strengthening the security and stability of families and promoting children's success. In addition to the voting members required on the governance board listed below, non-voting representatives may be included from the following disciplines--mental health provider, substance abuse provider, domestic violence services, consumers/citizens (one from each county appointed by the Local Planning Group) and coordination staff as approved by the core board. The Local Planning Group is open to anyone interested in the welfare of children and families. It strives to include service providers, concerned citizens, parents, non-traditional stakeholders, courts and child welfare workers. Community Partnerships is a way of working with families that helps services be more inviting, needs-based, accessible and relevant. The Board meets quarterly or more often if need at the Page County Courthouse Boardroom. Currently, DCAT funding is channeled through the public schools to enhance prevention activities for at-risk students and CPPC funding is going toward Neighbor Network projects to be inclusive and innovative.
The Fremont/Page Prevent Child Abuse Council was incorporated in October 2008. The philosophy of the Council is based on the belief that no child should be abused or neglected. Therefore, child abuse and neglect should be prevented before the pain has been inflicted. The purpose of the Council is to prevent child abuse in all its forms in Fremont and Page Counties through a commitment that is comprehensive and broad based. These meetings are held monthly and the location alternates between the two counties so that all interested individuals have an opportunity to be included. Members of the Council include Southwest Iowa Families, Inc., Fremont County Extension, Page County Extension, Page County Public Health/Child Care Nurse Consultant, Shenandoah Medical Center, Clarinda Police Department, Child Care Resource and Referral, Department of Human Services, Area Education Agency XIII, and the Shenandoah Hispanic Center.
The Corner Counties Early Childhood Area is fortunate to have a large cluster of community partners that are effective members of the Early Childhood Committee. The community partners are enthusiastic, informative, and valuable to the Board. The majority of the community partners are known as “front line” workers, those that are working with children and their families on a regular basis and have knowledge of obstacles that keep children from becoming healthy and successful. In addition, there are also consumers that take an active role within the local area that allows for a different perspective as to current needs within the area. Additionally, many of the community partners continue to attend the Corner Counties Board meetings. The Board feels that in many aspects they have become a means for the gathering and distribution of information that is crucial for the early childhood community. The following is a list of the agencies/organizations that attend one or more of the collaborative meetings.
Child Care Resource and Referral
Clarinda Community Preschool
Clarinda Garfield Preschool and the Clarinda Community School District
Department of Human Services
Essex Child Care Center
Farragut Community Preschool and the Farragut Community School District
Fremont, Page, and Taylor County DCAT and CPPC Board
Shenandoah Community Preschool and the Shenandoah Community School District
South Page Community Preschool and the South Page Community School District
Southwest Iowa Families, INC.
Southwest Iowa Home Health
St John’s Noah’s Ark Daycare and Preschool
Turnbull Child Development Center
Waubonsie Mental Health Center
Section V: Review and Evaluation The following measures have been put into place by the CCECA Board to establish a method of continual evaluation, guarantee that the Community Plan reflects the needs of the community, and the effectiveness of programs funded
Contracted providers are required to provide quarterly reports using a matrix provided by the Board that includes State required performance measures as well as locally required measures.
Contracted providers will provide the Board with an oral report once per fiscal year.
Written reports will be provided to the Board at the end of each fiscal year. Reports will focus on input measures, output measures, quality/efficiency measures and outcome measures.
Corner Counties Early Childhood Area Board
The Results Accountability Committee reviews the contracted providers’ quarterly reports and provides feedback to the Early Childhood Board on a quarterly basis. Any questions or concerns the Board has will be forwarded in writing to the contracted providers requesting a written response.
The Board Processes Committee meets at a minimum of one time per year. The Board Processes Committee reviews the CCECA Board By-Laws and recommends revisions as needed, provides for compliance with legislation and for Board trainings, monitors the Board’s processes for evaluation and self-evaluation, provides for relationships with staff and review of their work, and recommends and conducts the Board’s grievance procedure.
The Finance Committee meets monthly to review and approve all expenditures and financial statements and provides a report to the Early Childhood Board.
The Community Plan is evaluated annually, taking into consideration new or revised legislation and changes within the community.
The CCECA Board submits an annual report to the State of Iowa.
The CCECA Board goes through the re-designation process from the State of Iowa every three years.
Many of the CCECA Board members are affiliated with numerous civic organizations and have the opportunity to not only share information pertaining to Early Childhood with other individuals within these organizations, but also use this as a method to receive feedback.
Corner Counties Early Childhood Area – Community Plan/Updated November 7, 2013