Agenda for Children is a twenty-eight year old nonprofit advocacy and service organization that focuses on the well-being of children, from birth through eighteen years of age. Our mission is to make Louisiana a state in which all children can thrive.
Areas of Expertise
Since its founding in 1984, Agenda for Children has worked to increase and preserve government support for families, improve the quality of childcare and K – 12 public education, increase children’s access to health care, make the foster care system work better, and overhaul the juvenile justice system. The diversity of programs that have been created and managed by Agenda’s staff and the issues that Agenda championed has helped the staff to acquire a deep understanding of children and the individual and support systems that they need to become healthy, well educated, and productive citizens.
While our current portfolio of program activities demonstrates a concentrated focus on early care and education, we have the capabilities and depth to work with individuals and organizations to address almost any issue related to children’s well-being. Our programs and projects have changed over time, but our commitment to achieving successful outcomes for children has not.
In addition to the programmatic work outlined below, our staff members are actively engaged in a wide variety of child-related activities, including:
- supporting the charter school movement in New Orleans and across the United States
- strengthening civic participation in and philanthropic support for children’s issues
- ensuring that children’s nutritional needs are a high public priority
- supporting the creation of programs to enrich children
We also lend our expertise to organizations by serving on boards, commissions, task forces, and advisory councils that focus on improving outcomes for children.
Agenda for Children's Child Care Resource & Referral (CCR&R) program is the DCFS-contracted child care resource and referral agency for 16 parishes in Southeast Louisiana and works to improve the quality of early education through four key initiatives:
- Resource and Referral: The “R & R” program connects parents to child care that meets their specific needs.
- Child Care Technical Assistance: The “TA” program provides on-site technical assistance and coaching to family child care providers and Class A child care centers. Through the TA process, our experienced coaches work with child care providers to improve program quality and assist centers in progressing through Quality Start, Louisiana’s quality rating system for child care.
- Directors' Network: Agenda for Children’s monthly Directors’ Network sessions inform directors about the latest developments and best practices in early care and education, while also providing directors with an opportunity to network with their colleagues from other child care programs.
- Positive Steps Training Program: Positive Steps provides professional development opportunities for early childhood educators, offering workshops on topics related to child development, health and safety and administration.
Bridge to Quality Project
Bridge to Quality works intensively with targeted child care centers to make sustainable improvements in the programs’ quality of care. Each center receives intensive on-site coaching, specialized trainings, business coaching, and equipment and materials to improve their quality. To date, Bridge to Quality has completed work with 22 centers, 11 of which have achieved 4 or 5 stars in Quality Start, Louisiana’s Quality Rating and Improvement System for child care centers.
>>Visit the Bridge to Quality page to learn more.
The New Orleans 0-8 Early Learning Workgroup
The New Orleans 0-8 Early Learning Workgroup is working to increase the number of New Orleans children who are prepared for kindergarten. The workgroup will study and highlight best practices (locally and nationally), support demonstration projects, conduct policy analysis and engage in advocacy as a means of accomplishing this goal.
>>Visit the New Orleans 0-8 Early Learning Workgroup page to learn more.
Louisiana KIDS COUNT
Louisiana KIDS COUNT, a project of Agenda for Children since 1991, provides policymakers and local leaders with accurate, up-to-date information about the well-being of children in Louisiana. Louisiana KIDS COUNT produces the annual Data Book on Louisiana’s Children, which presents parish-by-parish profiles of children’s educational, social, emotional, and economic well-being. KIDS COUNT data is also available through the online KIDS COUNT Data Center.
>>Visit the Louisiana KIDS COUNT page to learn more and download our latest publications.
Striving Readers Comprehensive Literacy Program is a partnership with FirstLine Schools that will focus on a comprehensive approach to literacy outcomes for all children including English as a Second Language (ESL) and students with disabilities. In its first year of operation, Agenda staff is working with early childhood educators and parents at five child care centers and targeted pre-K classrooms to create literacy-rich environments everywhere that kids are.
>>Visit the Striving Readers page to learn more.