KALAMAZOO COUNTY READY 4S

Joyful, Intentional, Life-Changing: The Power of Pre-K!

aka KC Ready 4s   |   Kalamazoo, MI   |  www.kcready4s.org

Mission

KC Ready 4s' mission is to advance fully accessible, high-quality pre-kindergarten education for every 3- and 4-year-old in Kalamazoo County through collaborative leadership with public and private providers.

Ruling year info

2012

Executive Director

Kristyn Buhl-Lepisto

Main address

259 E. Michigan Ave. Suite 409

Kalamazoo, MI 49007 USA

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EIN

27-3342489

NTEE code info

Fund Raising and/or Fund Distribution (P12)

IRS filing requirement

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

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Communication

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

There are approximately 3000 4-year-olds in Kalamazoo County. Some children are eligible to participate in Head Start (federal funding for families at or below 100% of the federal poverty level), and the Great Start Readiness Program (State of Michigan funding for families up to 250% of the federal poverty level). Families between 251%-400% also experience hardships when it comes to paying for high-quality pre-K options - it is expensive. We want to be sure all 4-year-olds have an opportunity to attend a high-quality program.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

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

High-Quality Pre-Kindergarten/Preschool

We provide multiple quality supports to partnering programs throughout Kalamazoo County. Some of these supports include: an assigned early childhood coach (Teacher Mentor), ongoing professional development for teachers, speech and challenging behavior supports, and much more. Curriculum and child assessment tools are additionally available to eligible programs.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
Caregivers

Where we work

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

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

We provide partial tuition assistance to families that qualify, on a sliding scale. Children who attend a high-quality pre-K program, based on Joyful, Intentional, Life-Changing learning experiences, are more confident and ready learners when they start their K-12 journey. We assist all interested pre-K programs in Kalamazoo County to achieve and maintain high-quality learning environments (as specified by the State of Michigan's Great Start to Quality).

Collaborate with Head Start and Great Start Readiness Programs through Kalamazoo RESA to ensure all families get connected to the programs for which they are eligible and meet their needs. Provide tuition support to eligible families. Offer teacher mentoring and professional development to participating classrooms. Partner with community organizations that offer learning opportunities for children and needs-based supports for families.

We have a small but mighty staff, vision-driven board of directors, passionate pre-K programs, and generous local funders.

We've come a long way! In 2011-12, our first year, we offered tuition support to 48 families at 5 pre-K programs. In 2019-20, our 9th year, we are funding 305 4-year-olds and 39 3-year-olds at 30 pre-K programs! The bigger picture is that we are working with a total of 56 pre-K programs in Kalamazoo County to provide high-quality supports, and there are 1179 4-year-olds and 892 3-year-olds being impacted in those programs.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We demonstrated a willingness to learn more by reviewing resources about feedback practice.
done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization collecting feedback from the people you serve?

    Paper surveys, Constituent (client or resident, etc.) advisory committees,

  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To make fundamental changes to our programs and/or operations, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve,

  • With whom is the organization sharing feedback?

    The people we serve, Our staff, Our board, Our funders, Our community partners,

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    We don't have any major challenges to collecting feedback,

Financials

KALAMAZOO COUNTY READY 4S
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Operations

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

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

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KALAMAZOO COUNTY READY 4S

Board of directors
as of 2/26/2021
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Lynne Cowart

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and 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? No
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 12/29/2020

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? GuideStar partnered on this section with CHANGE Philanthropy and Equity in the Center.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
White/Caucasian/European
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender (cisgender)
Sexual orientation
Heterosexual or Straight
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

 

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 12/29/2020

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We ask team members to identify racial disparities in their programs and / or portfolios.
  • We disaggregate data to adjust programming goals to keep pace with changing needs of the communities we support.
  • We employ non-traditional ways of gathering feedback on programs and trainings, which may include interviews, roundtables, and external reviews with/by community stakeholders.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We have community representation at the board level, either on the board itself or through a community advisory board.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.