CAT Spotlight – North Monterey County

BB Comms Community

Noemy Loveless has been a part of the Bright Beginnings’ North Monterey County (NMC) Community Alliance Early Years Collaborative Action Team (CAT) from the very start. As the Director of Student and Family Services of the Castro Plaza Family Resource Center at North Monterey County Unified School District, she is dedicated to helping parents and children thrive in our community.

For the last year and a half, the North Monterey County Community Alliance has worked together to create a strategic plan that focuses on cradle to career. “The cradle to career strategic plan works towards supporting children and families from the prenatal stage through their young adult life,” explains Loveless. This strategic plan has allowed the Early Years CAT to select an indicator to focus their efforts on increasing reading to children, which supports children being school ready and reading at 3rd grade reading level.

This past October, members of the North Monterey County Community Alliance participated in the StriveTogether training hosted by Bright Beginnings, Impact Monterey County and Bright Futures. Loveless and Bright Beginnings consultant experienced an aha-moment at the training.

At the December NMC Community Alliance meeting, a summarized update of the training was presented and the group decided to pivot the Early Years CAT’s initial one-year project charter to incorporate more data. “This decision is really exciting because it will incorporate the Kinder-Readiness Assessment (KRA) data from Fall 2015, to refocus our project charter based on these data points.” shared Loveless. If children are ready for kindergarten and then make progress in reading development, and therefore are reading on grade level by 3rd grade, then they are most likely to continue toward graduation and college readiness.

Even though the CAT has seen breakthroughs and positive results from their Early Years CAT draft plan work, Loveless understands that there is much more to be done. “Not all of our children 0-5 years old are getting early childhood development services they need before they enter kindergarten. There are a variety of services, but we know that we still are not providing enough early children development services to all children 0-5” said Loveless.

Loveless hopes that through the Early Years CAT’s ever-increasing partnerships and relationships with others in the community that are focused on the early years, “our NMC Community Alliance will continue to grow our cross-sector representation. Be it businesses, churches, local libraries, local colleges or county agencies.”

Loveless stated the need for all organizations involved to work together and use data around early childhood development to provide a better future for the children and the community. These partnerships working on a project charter will make a collective impact on the NMC Community Alliance efforts of supporting the strategic plan cradle to career.

The North Monterey County Early Years CAT is hoping this year-long project charter will lead to improve and expand the services offered across North Monterey County in Moss Landing, Castroville, Prunedale, and Royal Oaks.