New Orleans Early Education Network
The New Orleans Early Education Network (NOEEN) is working to have a collective impact on the early childhood sector in New Orleans by increasing at-risk children’s access to quality early care and education and by designing and implementing a systematic approach to improve the quality of all publicly funded early learning programs.
NOEEN is comprised of all publicly funded early childhood care and education providers in Orleans Parish—more than 150 public schools, non-public schools, Type III early learning centers, Early Head Start centers and Head Start centers—serving more than 5,500 publicly funded birth to five-year-old children. Agenda for Children serves as NOEEN’s Lead Agency. As the Lead Agency, Agenda for Children supports child care centers, schools and Head Start programs as they work to provide quality early care and education to New Orleans children and families. Currently, NOEEN is responsible for coordinating enrollment, conducting CLASS observations, and serving as a point of contact between individual programs and the Louisiana Department of Education for reporting purposes and coordinating funding requests.
NOEEN's work is guided by a steering committee comprised of representatives from schools, centers, Head Start and Early Steps. All Steering Committee meetings are open to the public. Visit the NOEEN Steering Committee page for information about past and future meetings.
NOEEN City Seats
In December 2017, the New Orleans City Council and Mayor approved a historic investment in early childhood education, enabling the creation of fifty new, high-quality “seats” for children ages six weeks to three-years-old. A year later, the City of New Orleans doubled its investment, increasing access for 112 children citywide. Known as the New Orleans Early Education Network (NOEEN) City Seats Program, this initiative is driven by three goals: to increase access to early learning, to improve the overall quality of participating centers, and to provide wraparound supports to caregivers and families. To ensure high-quality programming was delivered, NOEEN City Seats was evaluated by the Louisiana State University (LSU) Health Sciences Center. A summary of the evaluation findings is available here.
Families wishing to enroll their children in a City Seats-funded program can learn more at EnrollNola.org.
Visit the ECHO fund page to learn more about an exciting new grant program for Type III early learning centers (and the nonprofits that support them) in New Orleans.
Coordinated Enrollment & Information
The Recovery School District's EnrollNola team has taken the lead on developing a coordinated enrollment process so that families can use a single online application to apply for most publicly funded seats in an early childhood education program, whether that program is located in a school, early learning center or Head Start. Families can apply online at EnrollNOLA.org.
Families seeking an early childhood seat for the 2019-2020 school year should check their eligibility on the EnrollNOLA website, then visit a Family Resource Center with the required documents to apply for a seat. Learn more about the process and see a list of which programs have openings at EnrollNOLA.org.
Every year, each early childhood care and education network in the state, including NOEEN submits Coordinated Funding Requests to the Louisiana Department of Education (LDE) detailing recommendations for seat allocations to specific operators for LA 4 and NSECD for the upcoming school year. The goal of NOEEN’s Coordinated Funding Request is to ensure that the limited number of publicly-funded early childhood seats are allocated to those programs that:
- Are high quality;
- Are in high demand by parents; and
- Meet families’ needs
Visit the Coordinated Funding Request page for with more information, including the applications, important dates and more information.
The Louisiana Department of Education is using Teachstone's CLASS tool to measure the quality of teacher-child interactions in publicly funded classrooms. As a community network, NOEEN oversees the CLASS observation process, ensuring that every publicly funded toddler and preschool classroom in the network receives a CLASS observation each fall and spring. NOEEN is also responsible for ensuring that the observations are valid and reliable, which includes making sure that all observers have been certified to observe and "double coding," which uses two CLASS observers, observing side-by-side to make sure that both are scoring accurately. To further ensure data quality, the Picard Center at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette will also observe some NOEEN classrooms to make sure that NOEEN observer scores are in line with those of independent observers. Additionally, NOEEN provides regular trainings on CLASS to help teachers and administrators learn more about the tool and ways they can use it to improve their practice. We also offer trainings for those who would like to become certified CLASS Observers.
NOEEN Strategic Plan
NOEEN Steering committee members worked with early childhood stakeholders and Bellwether Education Partners to develop a vision for NOEEN's future. Click here to read the Strategic Plan.