As we are drawing near this year’s Cradle to Career Network Convening, we are once again energized by the interest and excitement around this work. With participants from 62 communities in 32 states, Canada, the United Kingdom and Australia, we are certainly looking forward to the diversity of topics and perspectives that will be shared during our two days together.
In line with our theme, moving from proving to improving, we have structured many of our workshops around how to use data differently in this work, not as a punisher or solely as an evaluator- but as a compass to guide our efforts to continually improve how we support kids. We also will be hearing recommendations from special task forces on how to incorporate equity into our work more meaningfully, and network members will be given the opportunity to participate in additional work groups to be launched around some of the most pressing issues in this work.
As we continuously improve our work and this field as a whole, we are developing tools and resources to help you do this work better and incorporate the learnings and innovations we are seeing in communities across the globe. Networking tools like the Partner Portal will be launched to help communities more intentionally connect with each other and facilitate the sharing of resources and knowledge. Tools like the Community Impact Report Card and Student Success Dashboard (still in development) will help us better manage both our community and student-level data so we are constantly making more informed decisions on our actions. Even with all the progress we are making, and the good work we are all doing, we still have so far to go. A main priority of our time together over the next few days will be to identify areas where we still need to improve, problem solve around those challenges and collectively shape the solution.