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“First Eight Memphis” aims to help provide early – and educational – childcare for local families

November 15, 2019

From ABC LocalMemphis.com:

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – There’s a new joint effort to provide an early childcare system for some of Shelby County’s most vulnerable children and families.


City, county, and school leaders celebrated the start of the “First Eight Memphis” program Thursday morning at Downtown Elementary School. First Eight will provide accessible childcare for families with children up to five-years-old, and get them into pre-K.


SCS says the new program will also help with their third-grade reading initiative.


“Pre-K builds the foundational skills. Build that bench, if you speak, so that students can articulate through school with a great start, because learning to read and reading to learn is paramount for student success,” said Shelby County Schools Superintendent Dr. Joris Ray.


First Eight has set a goal to help 30,000 children and families, and to have 90% of children kindergarten ready in the next five years.