The foundation on Wednesday brought together leaders from across the region to begin the hard work of planning “solutions” – integrated programs and services – to ensure children in Cleveland’s Central Neighborhood are ready to go to school, go to good schools and graduate from high school to go on to college.
The five “planning team” leaders, along with foundation staff, education, community and data experts spent the day mapping out the issues and the next steps needed to jump start the Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood.
The teams include one focused on young children from birth to age 5, two groups focused on elementary school issues, a high school team and finally one concentrating on transitioning students from high school to college or other post secondary training.
The effort in Cleveland was inspired by the Harlem Children’s Zone, which is working to end the cycle of generational poverty following children from “cradle to college to community,” with a seamless set of programs and services for children and their families and the community.
However, it differs from the Harlem Children’s Zone in that HCZ operates its own pre-school, elementary and high school, something the local initiative will not.
Instead, the Cleveland Central Promise Neighborhood plans to build upon successful programs already operating in Central and bringing effective services working in other neighborhoods into Central and scaling them up over the next three to five years.