September Partner Plan Act E-Newsletter

September 11, 2023
“Power concedes nothing without an organized demand.”Charlene Carruthers 

Community Systems Statewide Support (CS3) 

CS3 Receives ISBE Funding for SFY24 – SFY28 

We’re very excited to share that the CS3 team has been awarded the Illinois State Board of Education’s Community Systems: Training and Technical Assistance grant! The funding will run from SFY24 – SFY28 and support CS3’s work in providing a system of statewide support for early childhood community systems through training, technical assistance, and coaching to community collaborations. This includes building the capacity of existing early childhood collaborations and supporting the efforts of communities working to develop early childhood collaboratives. The focus will be to increase enrollment of children birth to five years old with high needs into high-quality early childhood programs and providing a seamless and coordinated system of services. 

CS3 will continue to provide foundational and targeted support to communities including the Partner Plan Act (PPA) Collaboration Institute, the annual PPA conference, new on-demand modules, and more. The work is already underway so stay tuned as we will announce new opportunities, trainings, and resources in upcoming newsletters. 


Welcome CS3’s New Program Manager! 

CS3 is pleased to announce that Deb Hwang has joined the team as our new Program Manager! Deb’s background in early childhood education and care includes over three years at the Governor’s Office of Early Childhood Development in managing home visiting projects through the Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five. Her work focused on strengthening and coordinating the home visiting system including the launch of the Integrated Referral and Intake System (IRIS) platform in four home visiting communities throughout the state. She also brings experience in grantmaking through her work at the Circle of Service Foundation and Asian Giving Circle, and clinical social work in underrepresented communities through research and direct practice. 

Deb completed her undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Madison and obtained her master’s degree at the University of Chicago Crown School of Social Work, Policy, and Practice. During her free time, she enjoys running along Lakeshore path, watching movies, and looking for good eats in her neighborhood. 




Research and Data Analysis Support Available from EduDream 

The CS3 team is excited to offer new support to community collaborations this year. We are partnering with EduDream to provide research and analysis support to two early childhood community collaborations. EduDream is a Latina-founded, woman-owned, research consulting firm inspiring transformation within education by bringing community voice and rigorous research together. The research and analysis support may include conducting landscape analyses of early childhood services, collecting secondary data, conducting trend analysis, developing data insights, or qualitative research and analysis.  

The research and data analysis support can help collaborations better understand the availability of highquality early childhood education and care (ECEC) services in the community, families’ access to highquality ECEC, workforce or facilities questions around ECEC, or ECEC costs to families.  


If your early childhood collaboration is interested in receiving research and analysis support, please complete this Request for Support and submit it to Brittain Ayres by September 22, 2023.  


Early Childhood Collaboration Data 201: Collecting and Summarizing Data 

One of the areas that collaborations request training and technical assistance in again and again is data. Collaborations know that data is important but may not know how to go about making data-informed decisions that can strengthen and deepen the impact of their work. In response, CS3 is offering a series of on-demand data modules that provide information, activities, and resources. These modules will help collaborations do their work more effectively which will ultimately improve outcomes for children and families in Illinois. 


Module 1 provides an overview of the goals for the course and a review of quantitative data collection. Module 2 helps collaborations assess community needs and outline a plan to collect data. Module 3 examines how to collect data through surveys, focus groups, and interviews. Module 4 explores how to present data in a way that can influence and support decision-making. 


Users can adapt the resources offered in this course to meet the unique needs of their collaboration and community to: 

· Further build collaboration knowledge of and comfort with data 

· Solidify skills around conducting surveys, focus groups, and interviews 

· Develop a plan for organizing data-centered events 


Thanks to generous funding from the Illinois State Board of Education, and in partnership with the Governor’s Office of Early Childhood, Illinois Action for Children is able to