Educational Institutions

Early Learning Coalition of Lake County

  • Leesburg, FL
  • http://www.elclc.org/

Mission Statement

To support and educate parents, early childhood professionals and the community as we collaborate to provide the highest quality early learning programs for our children.

Main Programs

  1. School Readiness Program
  2. Voluntary Pre-kindergarten (VPK)
  3. Child Care Resource & Referral
  4. Raising A Reader
Service Areas

Self-reported

Florida

The Early Learning Coalition of Lake County provides services for the children, parents, providers and the community of Lake County Florida.

ruling year

2001

Principal Officer since 2003

Self-reported

Ms Lesha Buchbinder

Keywords

Self-reported

education - low income - children - at risk - pre-k

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EIN

59-3666873

 Number

6570175758

Contact

Cause Area (NTEE Code)

Elementary, Secondary Ed (B20)

Kindergarten, Nursery Schools, Preschool, Early Admissions (B21)

Educational Services and Schools - Other (B90)

IRS Filing Requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

Programs + Results

How does this organization make a difference?

Overview

Self-reported by organization

The children and families of Lake County are our future and our most vulnerable resource. Our children will enter school eager to learn and ready to succeed.

Programs

Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Program 1

School Readiness Program

The School Readiness program provides subsidized childcare for working poor families. This program fuels the economic engines of our community by allowing parents of more than 2,000 children each month to afford safe and reliable child care. Lacresha (a School Readiness client), stated, "ELCLC has been a tremendous blessing for me and my son. The funding has allowed me to have my child in daycare learning while I am working. I appreciate the services and am extremely grateful that I was introduced to such a program".

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Infants/Babies (under age 5)

Other Named Groups

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

$6,669,273.00

Program 2

Voluntary Pre-kindergarten (VPK)

The Voluntary Pre-kindergarten (VPK) program prepares four year-olds for kindergarten. This program, free to parents regardless of income, is offered at participating licensed private child care centers, accredited faith based centers, many public schools and Head Start sites, as well as licensed family child care homes. VPK provides four year-olds with both self-management and emergent literacy skills, such as letter and sound recognition. These skills are critical for future academic success. There was a total of 2,466 children served in the VPK 2014-2015 school year and summer programs.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Infants/Babies (under age 5)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Infants/Babies (under age 5)

Budget

$5,602,918.00

Program 3

Child Care Resource & Referral

Child Care Resource & Referral staff assist parents with initial applications and general information requests. The staff also provides entry into the Unified Wait List System, wait list maintenance, pre-screening for eligibility for childcare subsidies, pre-registration requests for Voluntary Pre-kindergarten, and updates of those individuals currently waiting for service, as well as customer notification of enrollment, scheduling appointments and other slot management activities as determined by the Coalition. If there is no funding immediately available, parents are advised as to other resources to help subsidize care. All families are offered information on their local community services. The Coalition averaged 2037 School Readiness children served monthly and families placed on the waitlist were served on an average of 3 to 6 months after being placed on the waitlist.

Category

Education, General/Other

Population(s) Served

Infants/Babies (under age 5)

Poor/Economically Disadvantaged, Indigent, General

Budget

$0.00

Program 4

Raising A Reader

The ELCLC is the only Raising A Reader affiliate in the State of Florida and currently serves seven providers with more than 350 children being impacted. The program rotates bright red bags filled with award-winning books into children's homes on a weekly basis with over 100 books per rotation cycle. The program also offers parent training and information on how to effectively share books to promote family literacy habits, language and literacy skills. The Coalition's Early Education Specialist is dedicated to this program and and also drives ELC's Big Blue Bus, a mobile resource unit that travels throughout Lake Co. to private child care facilities, libraries and community events to allow children to visit the bus and participate in hands-on educational activities. There is no cost to the parent of children participating in this program. The bus has a lending library where parents or teachers can borrow books and then return them for more books.One of our parents quoted "Since becoming a part of the Raising A Reader program my child requests that I read to her every night and we've made frequent visits to the library".

Category

Population(s) Served

Budget

Charting Impact

Self-reported by organization

Five powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

  1. What is the organization aiming to accomplish?
    Education is the Community Impact Priority Area the Early Learning Coalition of Lake County, ELCLC, is working towards. High quality child care is crucial. The quality of the early childhood program a child attends is a strong predictor of a child's cognitive and language development and future economic success, as well as the increased likelihood of them completing high-school and attending college with the potential to acquire higher paying jobs, higher IQ scores, and better math, reading and language skills. Much research suggests that children from low-income families are at a greater risk of poor and/or failing grades in school. The Early Learning Coalition of Lake County, ELCLC, program The School Readiness Child Care Subsidy Program (SR) is vital to low income families, or the working poor, to provide high quality early childhood education and child care options so these families can become financially self-sufficient and their young children can be successful in school and in the future. The SR program targets working poor families with children ages birth to five years of age, who could not otherwise afford quality child care, and provides child care for children who are at risk of abuse and/or neglect as identified by the Florida Department of Children and Families. The SR program funds are intended to help income eligible families with children at risk of future school failure and may include recipients of temporary cash assistance who meet federal work requirements, families with children at risk of abuse, neglect or abandonment, parents who are verified to be homeless, parents who are victims of domestic violence, working families with low incomes, single parent families, teenage parents, low income migrant families and farm workers and families of children with disabilities and special healthcare needs. In Lake County, the Early Learning Coalition provides subsidized child care services to families that are determined to be income eligible as well as to families with a valid child care referral. The SR program takes into account a child's physical, social, emotional and intellectual development; involves parents as their child's first teacher; prepares children to be ready for school and ready to succeed as well as being on track to be promoted to the next grade level; as well as providing parents information about child development and other topics of interest. The SR program's components provide age-appropriate developmental screenings, for children age birth to five years, of each child's development with an appropriate referral process for children with identified delays, suspected disabilities or special health care needs. Coalition staff works in cooperation with health care practitioners and other early care and education programs for young children such as Head Start, Early Head Start and the Voluntary Pre-Kindergarten program.
  2. What are the organization's key strategies for making this happen?
    The Early Learning Coalition of Lake County, School Readiness program provides training opportunities for parents, families and child care personnel. The program provides degreed and trained staff to deliver services including: inclusion services, behavior services, programmatic and environmental assessments, curriculum support, lesson planning, technical assistance and classroom management. The program also provides improvement in the level of quality for early childhood education providers in Lake County through increased training opportunities on a variety of topics and interests, conferences, accreditation programs and resource grants.There is much variation in the length of time a typical participant is engaged in the SR program. For children it is dependent upon the activity the parent is engaged in; the parent could be working, attending classes or have a valid DCF referral. Once a family has been approved to receive SR funds the parent/guardian will come to the ELCLC office and complete the initial interview process which takes approximately 45 minutes. Once approved the client will be given a child care certificate/voucher to give to their child care provider. Currently most certificates are valid for up to six months. Before the six month period has ended the parent/guardian will once again come to the office to have their continued eligibility re-determined. This process will continue for the length of time the client remains eligible. Care may be provided for both full and part time schedules. The children approved for SR services attend the early care and education program either part time or full time based upon the parent/guardian's approved activity. Ideally, the longer the child stays in the quality early care and education program the better for their future outcomes and academic achievement. For child care providers their time in the SR program is also varied. They may participate for a month, one year, ten years or more. That number is difficult to predict. Providers are in contact with the Coalition for monthly and quarterly trainings, conferences, monitoring visits and targeted technical assistance. Coalition staff further provides inclusion services, behavior services, programmatic and environmental assessments and classroom management techniques. Ideally, the longer the child care provider continues to attend trainings and conferences, the more knowledge they will gain and their individual programs will be of higher quality. Other supports and incentives for providers that the ELCLC delivers are accreditation programs, early childhood conferences and resource grants based on the quality of the provider's program.
  3. What are the organization's capabilities for doing this?
    The Early Learning Coalition of Lake County, as are all local coalitions, are legislatively mandated to seek six percent (6%) in local Working Poor Eligible Match (WPEM) revenues to leverage the state and federal child care block grant funding provided through Florida's Office of Early Learning. In Lake County, approximately $3.9 million of the $6.7 million available in state and federal funds for child care subsidies is designated for working poor families. This means that the Coalition must secure a total of $234,000 for the WPEM through local resources. One-hundred percent (100%) of the WPEM is distributed directly to child care providers, on a reimbursement basis, along with state and federal funding. For every one dollar ($1) generated locally, state and federal funding sources contribute fifteen dollars and sixty-seven cents ($15.67) toward families ' child care costs in the BG8 (working poor) funding category. Each year, we request funding from foundations to help reach that goal, including Lake County Children's Service Council, United Way, Publix Supermarket Charities, TD Bank, Hans and Cay Jacobsen Charitable Foundation, Mount Dora Community Trust, Kids Central Inc., and the Community Foundation of South Lake County, local municipalities, local businesses, and individuals. In addition, we are always looking for new and innovative ways to raise awareness in the community through events and campaigns, such as the JustMatchlt.org, our match program through which individuals can donate through PayPal. Unfortunately the Coalition is experiencing a shortage of WPEM funds from contributors. There are less grants to apply for, we are receiving smaller grants and are being excluded from some grants because we have received them in the past. Our need for WPEM funds has increased substantially. If the full WPEM is not secured for FY 2015-2016, Lake County will lose a proportionate amount of its state and federal child care block grant funding. If this occurs, children and families will lose child care subsidies and families will not be able to afford quality child care. When child care subsidies are not available, parents either quit or lose their job in order to care for their children, place them in substandard or unregulated care, or leave them unattended at home, all of which creates larger social and economic disparities. There are presently 2018 children enrolled in the SR program, with 1509 of these children in the BG8 (working poor) category. The Coalition is required to meet the full WPEM amount just to maintain SR services for these children. Currently we have 943 children on the Wait List that are eligible for services but are waiting on available funding to be enrolled in the SR Program. Without the support of the local community contributing funds over and above the required WPEM these children will not be served. The goal of the Coalition is to provide SR services for ALL eligible children.
  4. How will they know if they are making progress?
    Not available.
  5. What have and haven't they accomplished so far?
    Not available.
Service Areas

Self-reported

Florida

The Early Learning Coalition of Lake County provides services for the children, parents, providers and the community of Lake County Florida.

Funding Needs

Local coalitions are legislatively mandated to seek six percent (6%) in local Working Poor Eligible Match (WPEM) revenues to leverage the state and federal child care block grant funding provided through Florida's Office of Early Learning. In Lake County, approximately $3.9 million of the $6.7 million available in state and federal funds for child care subsidies is designated for working poor families. This means that the Coalition must secure a total of $234,000 for the WPEM through local resources. One-hundred percent (100%) of the WPEM is distributed directly to child care providers, on a reimbursement basis, along with state and federal funding. For every one dollar ($1) generated locally, state and federal funding sources contribute fifteen dollars and sixty-seven cents ($15.67) toward families ' child care costs in the BG8 (working poor) funding category. Unfortunately the Coalition is experiencing a shortage of WPEM funds from contributors. There are less grants to apply for, we are receiving smaller grants and are being excluded from some grants because we have received them in the past. Our need for WPEM funds has increased substantially. If the full WPEM is not secured for FY 2015-2016, Lake County will lose a proportionate amount of its state and federal child care block grant funding. If this occurs, children and families will lose child care subsidies and families will not be able to afford quality child care. When child care subsidies are not available, parents either quit or lose their job in order to care for their children, place them in substandard or unregulated care, or leave them unattended at home, all of which creates larger social and economic disparities. There are presently 2018 children enrolled in the SR program, with 1509 of these children in the BG8 (working poor) category. The Coalition is required to meet the full WPEM amount just to maintain SR services for these children. Adequate funding is a further need. Currently the Coalition has 943 children on the Wait List that are eligible for services but are waiting on available funding to be enrolled in the SR Program. Without the support of the local community contributing funds over and above the required WPEM these children will not be served. The goal of the Coalition is to provide SR services for ALL eligible children. Additional funding would further allow the Coalition to hire more staff members, offer additional quality incentives to child care providers and raise the rate of pay child care providers receive.

Accreditations

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Financials

Financial information is an important part of gauging the short- and long-term health of the organization.

EARLY LEARNING COALITION OF LAKE COUNTY INC
Fiscal year: Jul 01-Jun 30
Yes, financials were audited by an independent accountant.

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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

Early Learning Coalition of Lake County

Leadership

NEED MORE INFO ON THIS NONPROFIT?

Free: Gain immediate access to the following:
  • Address, phone, website and contact information
  • Forms 990 for 2015, 2015 and 2014
  • Board Chair and Board Members
  • Access to the GuideStar Community
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Principal Officer

Ms Lesha Buchbinder

BIO

Ms. Buchbinder has a Bachelors of Science degree in Finance from Louisiana State University and an Associate of Science Degree from Louisiana Tech University. Ms. Buchbinder has been with the Coalition since July 2003. Ms. Buchbinder works directly with the Board of Directors and is responsible for all executive functions including fiscal accountability, contract procurement and management and the planning and implementation of the agency's long term goals and objectives. Ms. Buchbinder is very active with the Association of Early Learning Coalitions and is the current President for the Central Florida Healthy Start Coalition, Children At-Risk Representative for the Lake County's MPO Disadvantaged Transportation Board, a committee member of the Lake-Sumter State College's Early Childhood Advisory Committee, and is a past member of the Lake Tech Early Childhood Advisory Committee and of the City of Leesburg's Sunrise Rotary.

Governance

BOARD CHAIR

Mr Byron E Thompson

LifeStream Behavioral Center

Term: Aug 2013 - Apr 2017

BOARD LEADERSHIP PRACTICES

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BOARD ORIENTATION & EDUCATION

Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

CEO OVERSIGHT

Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

ETHICS & TRANSPARENCY

Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD COMPOSITION

Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership?


RESPONSE NOT PROVIDED

BOARD PERFORMANCE

Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years?