Strategic Plan 18-21 - Long Beach Day Nursery

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e are excited to present the Long Beach Day Nursery (LBDN) strategic plan for July 2018-June 2021. In our 106 years, we have always been forward thinking, seeking out new and better ways to support children and working families. This plan continues in that tradition. Our tenure and strength is a credit to the community members, elected officials, and area foundations that have invested in the LBDN and to the unwavering dedication and brilliance of our staff (some of whom have been with the organization for more than three decades!). Our mission to provide high quality early care and education for children of working families rings as true today as it did over 105 years ago when Long Beach Day Nursery started serving our community As our community and field evolve, so too are we evolving to best meet the needs of our community, students, families, and staff. As you will read on the following pages, this plan calls for continued investment in high-quality, research-based programs that engage and embrace the whole child and their family. It calls for investing in our team who work tirelessly to provide a strong foundation of love and learning for our children. It calls for deepening partnerships to coordinate and maximize our efforts on behalf of families, young children, and our early childhood workforce. This plan calls for further mobilizing our supporters to advance our comprehensive vision for the future. With much excitement,

Whitney Leathers, E xecutive Director

Debbie Thorpe, Chair, Board of Directors

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Long Beach Mayor, Robert Garcia, reads a story to Long Beach Day Nursery children.

Long Beach Day Nursery is so much more than just a child care center, but rather an iconic Long Beach institution that continuously pushes the envelope of what it means to be a high quality e arly childhood education program.

What do children need to thrive? Family leadership & support

Early learning & development

Food, nutrition, mental & physical health

Physical environments

Teachers with professional development and career pathways

Content adpated from Hope Starts Here

Why invest in early childhood? Countless research studies have made clear that the first five years—in particular, the first three years—are critical for lifelong learning and health. During the first few years, 700 –1,000 new neural connections are formed every second; and a staggering 90% of a child’s brain is developed by age five. Ensuring that young children have access to rich learning experiences in environments that are safe and promote healthy development is critical for success in school and in life. According to the National Association for the Education of Young Children, high-quality early education promotes not only children’s cognitive abilities, but also crucial traits like sociability, motivation and self-esteem. The positive effects from high-quality programs and the negative effects from poor-quality programs are magnified for children from under-resourced communities or those with special needs (National Institute of Child Health and Development). Making the work of Early Childhood Education programs vital to the future success of our most vulnerable children.

High-Quality Early Education Frequent positive interactions among adults and children Age- and developmentally-appropriate learning activities Teachers and support staff trained in child development and early education Enough adults to respond to individual children Healthy and safe environment Regular parent-teacher communication Nutritious meals and/or snacks

Beyond the individual child, early childhood development directly influences the economic, health and social outcomes for individuals and society. Every dollar spent on high-quality, birth-to-five programs yields a 13% annual return on investment through reduced need for special education and remediation, better health outcomes, reduced need for social services, lower criminal justice costs and increased self-sufficiency (Heckman, 2016).

Ongoing, systematic program evaluation *Source: Adapted from the U.S. Department of State

Additionally, ECE programs allow families to work or attend school knowing their children are safe and happy, and allowing parents to be productive members of our economy. Long Beach Day Nursery Strategic Plan 2018–2021 | 3

Who we are Founded in 1912, the Long Beach Day Nursery (LBDN) was one of the first licensed child care programs in California. LBDN was the first licensed program in Long Beach and the first in Long Beach to meet the high standards required for accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). Our mission—to provide high quality early care and education for young children of working parents – has remained unchanged. In fact, our mission has become more vital as the number of single-parent and dual-parent working families grow. LBDN has graduated thousands of young children, who, upon entering kindergarten, were better prepared to take full advantage of their school experience and succeed in kindergarten and far beyond.

Alumni, Mayor Beverly O’Neill, with former LBDN Executive Director Florence Fisher and LBDN Teachers

Long Beach Day Nursery incorporated and moved into the facility at 805 Alamitos Avenue, a gift of Adelaide Tichenor.

Long Beach Day Nursery was founded. Opening day enrollment: 3 children.

First permanent Nursery building constructed at 1548 Chestnut Avenue on land donated by Rotary Club. LBDN continues to operate services at this location to this day.

New East Branch built at 3965 Bellflower Boulevard in Heartwell Park. Today LBDN serves 136 children daily at this location.

The Florence Bixby Endowment Fund for the Future was established to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the Nursery.

Second nursery donated by Mr. and Mrs. Fred and Florence Bixby as a memorial to their son, John Treadwell Bixby.

The West Branch was the first program in Long Beach to be awarded accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) followed by East Branch in 1991.

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LBDN’s history is deeply rooted in the community. Surely, the success of the LBDN stems from the high standards that were set forth by its founding board and first director, Florence Fisher. Theirs was a vision of great magnitude that truly earned the respect of the community. Those early standards have never wavered. Today, LBDN reflects over 105 years of experience and a continued strong commitment to the highest quality early care and education. LBDN is so much more than just a child care center, but rather an iconic Long Beach institution that continuously pushes the envelope of what it means to serve children and their families, and provides a high quality early childhood program for more than 300 children each year.

Long Beach Day Nursery Alumni Honorable Mayor Beverly O’Neill with current LBDN Executive Director Whitney Leathers and Preschool Room 2 children at the East Branch.

LBDN Board of Directors launched Stepping Stones to Success Scholarship Campaign providing scholarships to families who didn’t qualify for subsidy but don’t make enough to pay full tuition.

East Branch grand opening of the new Beverly Lewis O’Neill Infant/Toddler Center and Hazel Liff Center added 36 infant spots and 32 toddler spots.

Happy 100th Anniversary to Long Beach Day Nursery!

Named “Best Child Development Center in Southern California” by vote of the viewers of the Best of LA television show.

Florence Bixby Society formed

Named Soroptimist of Long Beach organization of the year for supporting women and children.

Rotary International President visits LBDN nursery from Autralia as a shining example of Rotary partnership that has lasted 100 years.

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At Long Beach Day Nursery we believe the future of our community rests with our children

What we do

Program Tenets

LBDN reflects over 100 years of experience and a strong commitment to the highest quality early care and education. Our programs are researched based, accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), and developmentally appropriate. LBDN goes above and beyond typical child care to carry out our mission. We offer quality care that meets the needs of our student’s development while simultaneously meeting the needs of families, allowing parents to go to work or complete their education knowing their children are in good hands. We are open 12 months a year, Monday-Friday 6:30am–6:00pm to accommodate family’s schedules.

Our program is guided by a core set of program tenets that encapsulate our commitments to the children, families and staff of LBDN.

When children graduate from the LBDN we are confident the high quality early education received within our program has prepared them for success in kindergarten and beyond.

• Partner with families for the personal growth and development of their children.

• Provide high quality, affordable early care and education to children ages 6 weeks to 6 years. • Nurture the social, emotional, physical, linguistic, and intellectual development of the young children enrolled in our school. • Prepare children for successful entry into Kindergarten.

• Enable parents of young children to be employed or complete their education. • Surround our teaching team with a system of support so that they in turn may provide the highest quality care for the children and families we serve.

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Accredited Program

Individualized Attention

Highly-Trained Qualified Teachers

LBDN has 2 of only 4 programs in the city that meet the high standards of NAEYC Accreditation

Low teacher child ratios Continuity of care Primary care groups Developmentally appropriate practice

Professional Development Incentive Program Degree’d and certificated teachers

School Readiness

Early intervention Program

Healthy Connections

Early literacy, art, music, social emotional, and STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) curriculum

Free on-site early intervention program and resources offered year-round

Health services, screenings, physical fitness education


Stepping Stones Scholarships

Family and Parent Engagement

Healthy, balanced breakfast, lunch and snacks made on-site and served daily

Financial assistance to promote greater access for families who do not qualify for subsidy but still need support for tuition

Parent workshops, advisory committees, special events, open door policy,

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TWO BRANCHES, SAME TREE LBDN operates two branches: East and West. While each branch has its unique characteristics and flavor, at each you’ll find the same high-quality, nationally accredited programs and services. LBDN serves approximately 325 children annually, ages six weeks to six years old. LBDN families reflect the diversity of Long Beach: 46% Latino/Hispanic, 16% African American, 25% Caucasian, 7% Asian, 6% other/unknown. Many of our families (56%) qualify for the USDA Child Care Food Program, a standard family poverty indicator. Approximately 64% of our families qualify for financial assistance with the cost of their LBDN fees, either through state funding or our own Stepping Stones to Success Scholarships. We also accept full-fee families which aids in our organization sustainability and provides a diverse economic mix of clientele.

325 Children attend annually

LBDN currently serves families at two sites in Long Beach. Our West Branch is located in the Washington neighborhood, one of the most impoverished neighborhoods in the city, plagued with high poverty, crime, violence/gang activity but also full of promise as families and community activists begin to emerge and work together to solve some of those challenges and improve our neighborhood; and, while our East Branch is located in a middle class neighborhood, many of the children attending the site receive subsidies to support access to early care and education. Both sites remain true to our mission and serve children of working parents in Greater Long Beach.



Qualify for financial assistance

Qualify for USDA Child Care Food Program

46% Latino / Hispanic 25% Caucasian 16% African American 7% Asian 6% Unknown

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WE BELIEVE All children in our community should have access to the highest standards available in early childhood education no matter what their families ability to pay.

West Branch 1548 Chestnut Ave Long Beach, CA 90813

East Branch 3965 N Bellflower Blvd Long Beach, CA 90808

Target Population 18 mo-6 years Classrooms 5 # Served 90 # FT Program Staff 19 # FT Admin 4

Target Population 0-6 years Classrooms 9 # Served 140 # FT Program Staff 40 # FT Admin —

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Strategic planning process overview In January 2018, LBDN launched a rigorous strategic planning process to guide the agency for the next three years. Guiding the effort was a Strategic Planning Task Force comprised of members from the LBDN staff, Board of Directors, Honorary Board Members, and community partners. Gathered around the table was a powerhouse group of LBDN champions, including past Interim Executive Directors and Board Chairs, family of our finder Florence Bixby, and LBDN alumni. Prior to the creation of the Task Force, the LBDN Board of Directors channeled their efforts for the past two years preparing for this strategic planning process. Board Chair Debbie Thorpe, Governance Chair Joen Garnica, and Executive Director Whitney Leathers went through a 6 month intensive Board Chairs Academy and brought the information back to the board to learn and grow. The result of that academy was twofold, with the Executive Board renewing their positions as officers for an additional year to continue the work they had started and this process also lead us into a board retreat at which plans for strategic planning were put into place. At that time the board also developed and rallied around what “We Believe” for our organization, staff, and most importantly, the children and families we serve. The “We Believe” statements are incorporated throughout this document and have provided a true north star for our work over the past year and continue to do so as we move forward with this plan. The Task Force met on three occasions to review program data, external trends and emerging opportunities. Their deep knowledge of LBDN and the Long Beach community ensured a nuanced and dynamic discovery process. In addition to the Task Force, the process benefited from input and insights gathered during parent focus groups and SWOT analyses with staff. LBDN also learned from external stakeholders – including leaders from Child Care Resource Center, Child Development Institute, and the Heron Collective—who shared their expertise related to emerging priority areas for LBDN, notably technology integration, staff support, and marketing and branding. LBDN’s planning process was unfolding at the same time as the city of Long Beach and the Long Beach Early Childhood Education Committee’s (of which LBDN Executive Director Whitney Leathers is a co-chair). We have and continue to seek out alignment with city-wide priorities and effort. The two plans share a focus on high-quality programs, partnerships, staff development and resilient families. We are grateful to the community leaders, board members, staff and advisors who lent their ideas and expertise to the planning process and to the children of LBDN who inspire all our efforts.


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WE BELIEVE Parents are a child’s first teacher, Long Beach Day Nursery will partner with families to support children’s growth & development

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WE BELIEVE Every child deserves an opportunity to benefit from quality early care and education; to learn and grow in a safe, nurturing and supportive environment

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Goal #1

Goal #2

Expand high-quality,

Foster an environment

innovative services for

that supports workforce

young children and

development and staff

their families


Goal #3

Goal #4

Amplify LBDN visibility

Increase community

and brand awareness

investment in early care & education

These four goals further deepen our roots in the community and build upon our strengths to support our community: children, parents and staff. Long Beach Day Nursery Strategic Plan 2018–2021 | 13

GOAL #1 Expand high-quality, innovative services for young children and their families LBDN has long been a leader in early care and education. We have and continue to be at the forefront of our industry – always seeking out new ways to improve and expand upon our work on behalf of working families (i.e., those in school, in training or employed) in Long Beach. In one recent example, over the past two years we more than tripled the number of on-site support hours of our groundbreaking Early Intervention Program, which provides a full slate of supports to children with identified special needs, social/emotional challenges, and/or behavior concerns and their families and teachers. As has been the case for the past 106 years, we remain steadfast in our commitment to evolve alongside our field. Infant care is one such area

1.1 Increase infant and toddler early care and education services at the West Branch

of growth; in the Washington neighborhood, home to our West Branch, only 13% of eligible infants and toddlers are being served, leaving too many families without quality, affordable childcare options (The State of Early Care and Education in LA County, 2017 Needs Assessment). Beyond site expansion, the plan includes investments in programming and operations, an increased focus on nutrition programming, the piloting of new technology systems, and increased opportunities for parent leadership and voice.

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Leverage funding streams to increase infant toddler capacity at West Support a steady pipeline of qualified infant and toddler teachers (see Goal 2.1) Ready the organization to deliver infant care (e.g., feasibility, facility plan, etc) Fundraise for capital investments and ongoing gaps in the cost of high quality care = Plan

= Seek funding

= Implement

* The Strengthening Families Framework from the Center for the Study of Social Policy is an evidence-based model for building five critical protective factors in families. They are: parent resilience, social connections, knowledge of parenting and child development (to make informed decisions about their child and family), concrete support in times of need, and social and emotional competence of children. The Strengthening Families Model has been embraced by Long Beach in the city-wide early childhood plan adopted in 2018.

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1.2 Enhance program offerings

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Ensure inspiring environments and superior facilities

Align parent educational programming with the Strengthening Families Framework and the needs/interests of each site* Increase on-site access to healthy food and nutrition programs (e.g., menu review and updates, nutritionist, staff training, gardening, family programming) Continue to expand LBDN onsite Early Intervention Program (EIP) to meet the needs of children and families

1.3 Integrate technology to facilitate: learning, communication, and efficient operations

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Update current technology infrastructure (servers, internet access, hardware, software) Implement technology systems to support operations, ease the burden of paperwork (e.g., assessments, evaluations), support organization communication, and measure impact Implement new technology tools that support school to home communication Determine LBDN policy on technology in the classrooms, and implement programming aligned with policy

1.4 Increase school to home community building activities

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Activate parent voice, volunteerism, and engagement

Provide training to staff to support parent engagement best practices

How We Know We’re Making Progress

Shift resources at West Branch to maximize the number of slots for infants and toddler out of the 86 available. A secondary goal is to increase the overall slots at West from 86-100 depending on the feasibility study.

Increase parent communication and involvement satisfaction measures by 10% as indicated on the annual parent survey.

90% of parents indicate they have received information on parenting and child development.

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GOAL #2 Foster an environment that supports workforce development and staff wellness At the core of our model is a belief that early childhood professionals are educators deserving of community support and respect who must be adequately compensated for their contributions and positive impact on the development and welfare of our children and society. On a systemic level, for too long early care and education professionals have not been adequately compensated. We understand that achieving increased level of compensation requires work on multiple fronts, including an active presence in advocacy efforts for increased reimbursement rates at the

2.1 Support access to higher education and increased credentials for LBDN team

state level and a balance between the cost of care and pricing working families out of the system they need. The import and urgency of this work is underscored by research that links the education level of the ECE workforce with the developmental gains of children (U.S. Department of Education, 2016). The staff at LBDN work tirelessly on behalf of our children and families; this goal focuses on strengthening the systems of support—from compensation to education to organizational culture—that advance staff wellness across multiple domains.

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Explore and implement models for accessing educational opportunities (on-site and/or in community) Provide financial assistance for staff returning to school or obtaining their credential Create a comprehensive wage system that aligns with educational attainment

= Plan

2.2 Ensure worthy wages for LBDN team

= Seek funding

= Implement

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Increase wages

Fundraise for workforce funding gaps (See 4.1)

See 4.1

Advocate for higher reimbursement rates (See 4.3)

See 4.3

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2.3 Promote a culture of ongoing appreciation and wellness

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Create and implement a meaningful wellness program for staff Institute a recognition and appreciation program to honor staff who go above and beyond in their service to children and families

2.4 Strengthen leadership capacity to support a high performing nonprofit organization

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Provide ongoing, high-quality professional development and coaching responsive to staff needs and interests and aligns with industry trends and best practices Utilize technology to increase staff and program communication (See 1.3)

How We Know We’re Making Progress

Decrease in staff turnover by 10%.

Increase in the percentage of staff holding or seeking higher credentials or degrees by 10%.

See 1.3

Increase in 15% in staff workplace satisfaction measures.

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WE BELIEVE Every child deserves the opportunity to benefit from quality early care & education

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GOAL #3 Amplify LBDN visibility and brand awareness From its earliest days, LBDN has been distinguished for our nurturing, joyful early education program, which has supported the development of generations of Long Beach children. Our impact data points to our ability to prepare students for success in kindergarten and beyond. Building on this strong foundation and brand affinity, the plan looks to position LBDN for our next century of service. In the coming years, we will enhance our communication strategies to spread the word about the quality and dynamism of an LBDN education. We will refine our message to attract the interest and support of new families, new staff and new donors. Beyond our own brand, we will continue to promote the collective interests

3.1 Increase community awareness and recognition of LBDN brand

of early care and education and other service providers in Long Beach. We have seen the value that comes with working alongside other local partners—from enhanced programming, to expanded trainings, and increased efficiencies. One recent example is the Long Beach Early Childhood Symposium and our partnership with LBECE Committee, LBUSD, and the Mayors Fund for Education. By coming together to provide a one day conference right here in Long Beach, we have enhanced the training content, increased the funding support for Symposium, made it accessible to all providers in Long Beach, and continued to build our organizations’ partnerships and provide the experience for our program staff as well.

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Conduct a review of the LBDN brand and update (including the website)

Update brand and marketing materials based on review

Establish a plan for disseminating information about LBDN

Strengthen board and define board role in community outreach = Plan

= Pause for funding

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= Implement

3.2 Maintain and increase meaningful partnerships whose priorities align with LBDN

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Maintain an active presence and leadership role in policy discussions around ECE through continued service on early childhood committees and advocacy groups Deepen partnerships and braid resources to reduce duplication of efforts and meet common goals

How We Know We’re Making Progress

Establish 3 new community partnerships.

Increase enrollment applications by 10%.

Fill enrollment slots at 100%.

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GOAL #4 Increase community investment in early care & education The continued growth and success of LBDN relies on having in place the right people, systems and resources; we must mobilize staff and board members, individuals, foundations, and the public sector in support of high-quality early education for local children and their families. We must match our ambition with similarly ambitious fundraising efforts. We will identify new champions. We will seek out opportunities to partner to maximize local

4.1 Launch a multi-year development plan to support the organizations’ ambition and goals

investments in early care and education. We will grow the Board of Directors to include new and different voices to drive strategy. Underlying all our work, we will push for policy change that advance the system of support and care for children, families, and the early childhood workforce across the state.

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Increase staffing to support communications and development Create an annual development plan that honors long time funding partners, includes a focus on increased individual giving, and new funding sources Leverage resources through partnerships (e.g., braided funding, in-kind support) (See 3.2.b) = Plan

4.2 Maintain a vibrant and active Board of Directors

= Pause for funding

See 3.2b

= Implement

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Recruit new members in line with strategic and diversity goals

Restructure board committees to support strategic goals

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4.3 Advocate for increased public funding for early care and education

FY FY FY 18-19 19-20 20-21 Stay connected with organizations actively engaged in advancing policies that support early childhood education (ECE) Educate elected officials and their staff on the needs of the ECE field Maintain an active presence and leadership role in city, county, and state-level ECE policy discussions (See 3.2.a)

See 3.2.a

Educate and engage LBDN staff on policy issues and advocacy efforts

How We Know We’re Making Progress

Net gain on revenues by 10%.

Increase in board membership to 20 board members.

Conduct a minimum of two visits with elected officials (or staff) annually.

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West Branch 1548 Chestnut Ave Long Beach, CA 90813

East Branch 3965 N Bellflower Blvd Long Beach, CA 90808



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