Effective Systems

Case Study: Working Together to Build a Birth-to-College Approach to Public Education


The University of Chicago Urban Education Institute (UEI) and the Ounce of Prevention Fund (the Ounce) embarked on an effort to form a partnership whose vision is to “… build a model of public education for children and their families that begins at birth and creates success in school, college, and life.”

The goal is to collaboratively and continuously align and create instructional practices, and academic and social supports, to demonstrate a new model of public education that seamlessly and successfully prepares children for college, beginning at birth.

The formation of this partnership, through the creation of a shared vision, mission, and goals, is outlined in the following case study. We hope, through the use of the case study, teaching notes and accompanying video, that organizations with the desire to forge similar partnerships can learn from our experiences.

Building a Birth-to-College Model: Professional Learning Communities, the newest in the series of case studies, outlines how to create Professional Learning Communities (PLCs) of teachers, administrators and family support staff spanning the early childhood to K-12 spectrum. The intent of the PLCs is to create environments where practitioners take the lead in collaboratively studying and piloting effective, developmentally informed practices that prepare children for college, beginning at birth.