All four-year-old children in Forsyth County will have the opportunity to enroll in an affordable, high-quality Pre‑K program.
To educate, engage, and mobilize the public and secure the commitment of civic leaders to support the establishment of a high-quality system of Pre‑K programs available to all four-year-olds in Forsyth County.
The Pre-K Priority was formed in 2014 by a group of early childhood professionals to explore how to improve the quality and number of early childhood programs available in Forsyth County. Since then, we’ve grown to include an ever-expanding number of participants who share a commitment to making high-quality, affordable Pre‑K available to every four-year-old.
We work to educate and advocate for affordable, high-quality Pre‑K programs and establish standards for a comprehensive system. We provide research on the current state of Pre‑K in Forsyth County as it relates to the state and national level, and the reasons why more investment is needed.
In April 2019, we released a report and recommendations for high-quality Pre‑K expansion, including quality standards, projected costs and a timeline for rollout. The Pre‑K Priority invites community support and input and seeks the commitment of public officials, business leaders, and neighborhood champions to bring about successful Pre‑K expansion.
The Pre‑K Priority is building a grassroots movement to support high-quality Pre‑K expansion. We’re also working directly with community leaders to turn them into champions. The good news is, we don’t have to start from scratch. There are many Forsyth County leaders and residents who already understand the importance of investing in high-quality Pre‑K. We are building on the solid standards and best practices of current programs funded by the North Carolina Pre‑K Program (NC Pre‑K) provided in classrooms in Winston-Salem Forsyth County Schools, at Family Services Head Start program, and in private community childcare centers.
We’re taking what’s promising and making it better. We’re encouraging those who “get it” to join us and in turn encourage others.
That’s where you come in!
The Pre‑K Priority Steering Committee oversees and coordinates activities leading to the adoption and implementation of an expanded, high-quality Pre‑K system in Forsyth County by:
Providing leadership for work groups as the groups refine, add, and implement recommendations
Reviewing and approving recommendations for the implementation, administration and evaluation of an expanded Pre-K system
Guiding and supporting education and advocacy activities
Increasing the number of individuals, community groups, organizations, and civic leaders committed to Pre-K expansion
The Forsyth County Commissioners, City Council of Winston-Salem, and WS/FCS Board of Education signed a resolution during 2021 in support of forming an Early Childhood Education Task Force as a planning and recommendatory body into assist in creating a proposal for the implementation of an equitable, accessible, high-quality Pre-K system that can serve all children in Forsyth County. The Task Force will meet from June 2021 – May 2022.
Task Force Chair: Don Martin
Vice Chair, Forsyth County Board of Commissioners
Task Force Vice Chair: Tricia McManus
Superintendent, Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools
Executive Director, Imprints Cares
Principal, Clifford Consulting
Louis Finney Jr.
Chief Executive Officer, Smart Start Forsyth County
Owner/Operator, North Point & TLC Learning Academies
Chief Academic Officer, WS/FC Schools
Chair Board of Education, WS/FC Schools
Professor Emerita, Winston-Salem State University
Program Coordinator of Early Childhood Education, Forsyth Technical Community College
Interim Chair of Education, Winston-Salem State University
Parent of Child Enrolled in Pre-K
Parent of Child Enrolled in Pre-K, Forsyth Family Power
Parent of Child Enrolled in Pre-K
Chairman & CEO, Flow Automotive Companies
President & CEO, Greater Winston-Salem, Inc.
Paul Robeson Ford
Board Chair, Action4Equity
Executive Director, Love Out Loud
Professor of Pediatrics, Director of Pediatric Population Health, Wake Forest Baptist Health & WF School of Medicine
Senior Vice President, President & COO , Novant Health Forsyth Medical Center
Executive Director, North Carolina Black Repertory Company
Board President, Hispanic League
Executive Director, Action4Equity
Executive Director, Boston-Thurmond United
Director of Government Relations – North Carolina, American Cancer Society
Executive Director, Latino Community Services
Council Member, City of Winston-Salem
Deputy County Manager (Retired), Forsyth County
President & CEO, Family Services
Chief Impact Officer, United Way of Forsyth County
Commitment to Families, Children, and the Community
We commit to working to develop affordable, high-quality Pre-K experiences that are inclusive, joyful, create a love of learning, and build positive identity.
We commit to eliminating disparities and achieving equity by providing all children with the resources they need to be ready to succeed in school.
We commit to supporting programs that are culturally responsive and celebrate home languages, cultures, and traditions.
We commit to ensuring access to high-quality programs that are in accord with the values and needs of each family.
We commit to incorporating the knowledge and lived experience of parents as experts on their children and communities into Pre-K programs, processes, and systems.
We commit to going beyond what’s been done in the past by adopting new, creative, and effective ideas to enable us to achieve our vision of a community in which all children are able to succeed in school and in life.
Bethlehem Community Child Care Center
Child Care Network
Child Care Resource Center
Church Child Care Center
Forsyth County Department of Social Services
Forsyth Technical Community College
Family Services / Head Start
Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust
North Carolina Justice Center
North Point Academy & TLC Learning Academy
Smart Start of Forsyth County
The Centers for Exceptional Children
The Forsyth Promise
Winston-Salem Chamber of Commerce
The Winston-Salem Foundation
Winston-Salem State University
Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools & Project Impact
YMCA of Northwest North Carolina