The Child & Family Network Centers

Building Minds. Shaping Futures.

aka CFNC   |   Alexandria, VA   |  http://www.cfnc-online.org

Mission

We build power within our community—the same community that founded our organization. The Child and Family Network Centers' (CFNC) mission is to provide caring, high-quality, free education and related services children and their families in their own neighborhoods in order to prepare them for success in school and life. Today, CFNC serves approximately 139 children and their families each year at eight accredited preschool classes in low-income neighborhoods in Alexandria. In addition to our preschool program, we offer comprehensive services for children and bilingual family support for parents including: parenting education and workshops, health screenings and social and emotional and behavioral support.

Ruling year info

1991

Executive Director

Mrs. Jacquelyn Didio

Main address

3700 Wheeler Avenue

Alexandria, VA 22304 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

54-1589809

NTEE code info

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

Children's and Youth Services (P30)

Family Services (P40)

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

CFNC builds power within our community—the same community that founded our organization. CFNC was established in 1984 by mothers living in public housing after seventeen of their children were failed by the system and did not move on to the first grade. Our founders were so successful, our first class were recognized as gifted by their public school! CFNC’s low-income, working immigrant parents know what is best for their families, and their three- and four-year old children have the potential within themselves to thrive. Unfortunately, racial equity gaps caused by systemic racism and heightened by COVID-19 make it harder to access the resources they need to meet their basic and holistic health needs, access high quality early childhood education services, achieve long-term goals, and build generational wealth. Our model empowers families to leverage resources provided and coordinated by CFNC to access these supports, including free multilingual preschool and family case management.

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?

Early Childhood Education

CFNC operates nine preschool classrooms for a total of 139 children at five sites in Alexandria, Virginia. Currently, we have 7 in-person classrooms and 2 virtual classrooms because of COVID19.

Our 2020-21 school year will run from September 2020 to June 2021, and our classrooms are open from 8:00am to 3:00pm Monday through Friday, with after-care offered until 6:00pm. CFNC also has an optional summer program for working families. CFNC educates students using the Creative Curriculum, a comprehensive, research-based curriculum that features exploration and discovery as a way of learning. The Creative Curriculum offers teachers bilingual, content-rich, and developmentally appropriate resources to help them plan daily lessons and tailored instruction for children from diverse backgrounds and varying skill levels. CFNC also offers Al’s Pals, a comprehensive curriculum and teacher training program that develops social-emotional skills, self-control, problem-solving abilities, and healthy decision-making in children.

CFNC will close racial equity gaps and build brighter futures for approximately 139 at-risk, preschool children and families who are negatively impacted by COVID-19 (about 348 individuals). We will also focus on the growing equity gap that our teachers face. We must do better to support our teachers. During this global pandemic, our early childcare professionals continue to work in-person so families can get back to work. When we reopened, we increased our teachers’ salaries, added more vacation days, and are currently reevaluating our professional development opportunities to ensure we provide the best possible means for upward career mobility. In 2017, the national median wage for early educators was between $10.72 per hour and $13.94 per hour, according to Center for the Study of Child Care Employment, Institute for Research on Labor and Employment, and the University of California, Berkeley.  

CFNC is currently using a hybrid model with in-person and virtual classrooms to safely serve three- and four-year-old children at risk for kindergarten failure and immigrant working families. In FY22, we plan to open all 8 of our physical classrooms at full capacity to serve 139 children in person. We are also keeping the open of virtual learning a possibility. CFNC’s classrooms are located in neighborhoods where 100% of our families live—the West End and Arlandria (the City of Alexandria’s poorest neighborhoods, with high concentrations of individuals who speak little to no English). Our easily accessible locations allow families to regularly engage: from providing feedback to guide our strategic direction, to serving on our Board of Directors, and even being employed as teachers in CFNC classrooms.

Unlike other local Early Childhood Education providers who target children eligible for Head Start, CFNC’s model is designed for low-income immigrant families who meet Virginia Preschool Initiative (VPI) eligibility requirements. VPI slots are designated for low-income, working families who live at or below 250% of the federal poverty line; we target VPI families ineligible for Head Start because their incomes are above federal poverty guidelines (i.e. $26,500 for a family of four). The vast majority of our families live at or below 130% of poverty. Many are essential workers and have been hit hard by the economic ramifications of the COVID-19 pandemic.

CFNC anticipates that our clients in FY22 will reflect the demographics of our current children and families. Our diverse FY21 families speak 10 languages and represent 16 countries; 74% identify as Hispanic/Latino/Latinx, 8% as African or African American, 1% as Asian, 7% as Middle Eastern, 2% as White, and 8% as Other. Most speak little to no English at home. 74% of students are English Language Learners (ELL). Though CFNC parents have an average 8th grade level of education, their education levels fall at one end of each extreme: from high school completion and/or some college in their home countries, to 0-3 years of formal education. Many CFNC families lack health insurance in the middle of a global pandemic; cultural barriers preclude seeking help.

Population(s) Served
Infants and toddlers
At-risk youth

CFNC’s bilingual social workers facilitate meaningful parental involvement to address the personalized needs of each child and ensure parents are equipped with resources to support their academic success before kindergarten. We strengthen families through individual case management, goal setting, home-visits, and parent workshops ranging from healthy parenting to nutrition to advocating for each child’s success once they enter kindergarten. As a result, we help each family identify barriers to their child’s success and provide relevant resources before they start kindergarten.

Population(s) Served
Parents

To help parents support their children’s healthy development, our social workers: (1) help parents ensure children complete the appropriate vaccinations and medical screenings before entering kindergarten; (2) assure all children secure health insurance and/or have a medical home free or sliding scale clinic before starting kindergarten; (3) arrange free annual dental, vision, and hearing screenings, as well as screen children for developmental delays; (4) work with parents to arrange follow-up care as needed; and (5) combat childhood obesity by incorporating healthy eating, nutrition, and physical activity each school day and offering workshops to encourage parents to incorporate these practices at home.

Overall, CFNC is unique because we offer the enhanced services described above to support our early childhood education program and eliminate barriers to learning. Our culturally sensitive, inter-generational model sets CFNC apart from its peers, stabilizing families and their home environments so that children can receive a quality education in preschool and beyond.

Population(s) Served
Families

Where we work

Awards

3 and 4 Star Ratings 2017

Virginia Star Quality Initiative

Selected as one of DC area's best small non-profits 2015

Catalogue for Philanthropy: Greater Washington

One of No. VA. top preschools 2010

Northern Virginia Magazine

Nonprofit Leader of the Year 2015

Leadership Fairfax

Board Leadership Award Runner Up 2016

Center for Nonprofit Advancement

Best Places to Work 2021

The Nonproft Times

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of children who have the ability to understand and comprehend communication

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Infants and toddlers, Ethnic and racial groups, At-risk youth

Related Program

Early Childhood Education

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

CFNC provides free, high-quality preschool to 139 3 and 4-year-old children and wrap around services to their families. We get children ready for kindergarten and ready for life.

Number of children who have the ability to use language for expression and to communicate with others

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Infants and toddlers, Ethnic and racial groups, At-risk youth

Related Program

Early Childhood Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of children who have emerging literacy skills such as beginning letter recognition and phonological awareness, story comprehension, and use of writing materials.

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Infants and toddlers, Ethnic and racial groups, At-risk youth

Related Program

Early Childhood Education

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of children having a medical home

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Infants and toddlers, Ethnic and racial groups, At-risk youth

Related Program

Early Childhood Education

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Number of parents/guardians engaged in student activities

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Families, Economically disadvantaged people

Related Program

Family Support Services

Type of Metric

Outcome - describing the effects on people or issues

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Our goal is to engage all parents/guardians in student activities

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

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.

CFNC aligns our mission with our new, DEI vision and organizational vision. We recognize we must align our goals with building power of our families and team, especially during COVID19.

Here are CFNC’s final results for the 2019-2020 school year, based on mid-year assessments (we could not complete final assessments before transitioning to virtual services):

Goal 1: 90% who complete the TS GOLD assessment will be ready to learn in kindergarten.

FY20 Final Result: On average, 94.65% of CFNC students who completed the pre- and mid-year TS GOLD assessments in FY2020 are kindergarten ready! (127/139 students completed both the pre- and mid-year checkpoint assessments in Fall 2019 and Winter 2019/2020.) CFNC students showed growth across all six TS GOLD assessment categories—meeting and exceeding kindergarten readiness checkpoints across all categories!

Goal 2: 90% who complete the PALS and/or TS GOLD assessments will see growth that brings them into the developmental range for phonological awareness and literacy. 

Final Result: On average, 96.2% of CFNC children assessed met or exceeded the TS GOLD literacy readiness benchmark by Winter 2019/2020—well above our 90% goal.

Goal 3: 75% of English Language Learners (ELLs) who complete the TS GOLD assessment will improve English proficiency, demonstrating their ability to succeed in an English-speaking kindergarten classroom.

Final Result: An average of 90.6% of CFNC students who completed the TS GOLD assessments met or exceeded the language readiness benchmark—including English Language Learners from 24 countries who speak 14 languages!

Goal 4: 60% who complete the TS GOLD assessment will improve their social skills in cooperation, independence, and interaction.

Final Result: CFNC achieved this goal. We made several service enhancements to offer trauma-informed services in FY20. As a result, 100% of CFNC children assessed met or exceeded the TS GOLD social-emotional readiness benchmark by Winter 2019/2020—including 37.7% who initially scored below widely held expectations in their pre-assessment!

Goal 5: 85% will receive hearing, vision, dental, and developmental delay screenings, with referrals for follow-up treatment as needed

Final Result: 86% completed hearing, vision, and dental screenings. 100% completed developmental delay screenings. All children in need received referrals for follow-up treatment.

Our strategies are effective because they created and is implemented by our families—including former parents and students who are members of our staff and board. We are committed to enhancing our model from a diversity, equity, and inclusion lens without losing sight of our roots as an organization founded by the community we serve. Power building is necessary for CFNC to continue this legacy with quality as an antiracist organization.

CFNC is Alexandria’s only holistic, multilingual preschool for low-income, working immigrant families. We implement a culturally-sensitive, family-centered, trauma-informed, and anti-racist approach to prepare at-risk children to thrive in kindergarten and build brighter futures:

Initial COVID-19 Response: At the onset of the pandemic in Spring 2020, CFNC immediately adapted our model to provide uninterrupted services, including: (1) virtual classrooms; (2) a new “Emergency Access Program” to distribute food, hygiene, and distance learning supplies; (3) expanded outreach efforts, with an enhanced communications plan to reach our families in all of their primary languages; (4) ongoing remote family case management, with referrals for emergency basic needs services while helping families apply for CARES Act benefits, including rent relief; and (5) coordination with local community partners, to quickly share and implement best practices for at-risk Alexandrians. We also created a comprehensive emergency plan so all of our families and staff knew what to do in case of an outbreak. 

Bilingual Accredited Early Childhood Education: In FY21, CFNC is offering a hybrid preschool model to continue our COVID-19 response—giving parents the choice to enroll in our seven in-person classrooms (up to 81 children, with optional after-care services) or two new virtual classrooms (up to 52 children). CFNC’s free preschool program runs from September 2020 to June 2021 (Monday-Friday from 8:00am-3:00pm, with optional in-person aftercare until 6:00pm). Our bilingual, accredited preschool classrooms are led by English- and Spanish-, Arabic-, or Amharic-speaking teachers. Bilingual instruction allows students to build confidence as they learn new concepts and skills in their primary language while preparing for public school, where only English is spoken.

We implement the Creative Curriculum for Preschool and Al’s Pals (a social-emotional curriculum) to help children develop key skills that indicate kindergarten success—including language, literacy, math, and social-emotional development. In addition, CFNC offers 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous aerobic, muscle-strengthening, and bone-strengthening activities on our playgrounds each day (weather permitting). We also offer meditation and mindfulness exercises to transition between activities. Research shows our movement-based activities enhance children’s ability to learn in the classroom.

CFNC's core expertise is three fold:

1)We achieve outstanding success with the children and families we partner with. When compared to other similar programs across the country using the same assessments, CFNC students show academic gains that are 2-3 times the national average. In just ten short months, CFNC prepares all children for kindergarten, with the majority of children 1-2 levels above the kindergarten readiness standard.

2) We are the only program that addresses the needs of multicultural families from diverse backgrounds. Although it is important for children to receive high-quality early learning opportunities, there are limited preschool options for the families who come to our doors. We are the only provider in Alexandria that offers fully bilingual education. CFNC employs at least one English-speaking and one Spanish-speaking teacher in each of our classrooms. Having bilingual teachers in the classroom thus allows students to build confidence as they learn new concepts and skills in their primary language while preparing them for public school, where only English is spoken. Our fully bilingual Family Support Workers as well as our bilingual administrative staff make CFNC a safe, welcoming space for families who speak little to no English.

3) We provide award-winning programs that educate the whole child and family, including a focus on their social and emotional wellbeing. CNFC teachers, social workers, and administrative staff go to extra lengths to ensure that each child feels socially and emotionally secure. Our social emotional curriculum, Al's Pals, is integrated into each daily lesson. Family Support Workers also provide individual counseling, social skills groups, and connect parents with outside resources. CFNC staff is deeply aware of the specific, individualized needs of each child, and works closely with each child's family to create social and emotional safety.

CFNC has been nationally recognized for our high-quality and unique program model, which sets a national standard for bilingual early education and wrap-around services for low-income families:

2021: Nonprofit Times "Top Places to Work List"
2017: Finalist for the Center for Nonprofit Advancement's Board Leadership Award.
2015:Nonprofit Leader of the Year award by Leadership Fairfax
2014: praised by President Obama's “Preschool for All" initiative as a national model for high-quality, bilingual preschools.

Long Term Goal: CFNC is currently completing our strategic plan, which will guide the organization from 2018 through 2023. The strategic plan will have a renewed focus on sustainability and stability. Our responsible FY18 organizational budget continues to reflect our progress toward financial sustainability. After making necessary staff cuts and salary adjustments, the approved FY18 organizational budget forecasts a surplus of $6,288. With our enhanced fundraising efforts, CFNC will continue its transition from surviving to thriving.

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 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 inform the development of new programs/projects, To identify where we are less inclusive or equitable across demographic groups, To strengthen relationships with the people we serve, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We look for patterns in feedback based on people’s interactions with us (e.g., site, frequency of service, etc.), We engage the people who provide feedback in looking for ways we can improve in response, We act on the feedback we receive, We tell the people who gave us feedback how we acted on their feedback, We ask the people who gave us feedback how well they think we responded

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, We don’t have the right technology to collect and aggregate feedback efficiently, The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, Staff find it hard to prioritize feedback collection and review due to lack of time

Financials

The Child & Family Network Centers
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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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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • 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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The Child & Family Network Centers

Board of directors
as of 03/11/2022
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Heather Jelks

Nautilus Coaching & Consulting, LLC

Term: 2017 - 2021

Heather O'Neill Jelks

Nautilus Coaching & Consulting, LLC

Abhisek Mitra

US Bancorp

Kyle J. Moore

Bank of America

Emily Coccia

Gigawatt Group

Lisa Herget

Ilene Lewis

Library of Congress Child Care Association

Tyler Massey

UBS

David Frantz

Conlon, Frantz & Phelan LLP

Jeffery Foster

Georgetown University

Catie Meyer

Sukumar Rao

The Parnin Group

Alberto Omeechevarria

Biscayne Contractors

Tonga Turner

Kaiser Permanente

José Gomez

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

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 5/24/2021

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

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

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/24/2021

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 review compensation data across the organization (and by staff levels) to identify disparities by race.
  • 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.
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
  • We have long-term strategic plans and measurable goals for creating a culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.
Policies and processes
  • We have a promotion process that anticipates and mitigates implicit and explicit biases about people of color serving in leadership positions.
  • 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.