Our goal: Increase the likelihood that all children experience supportive early learning environments that ensure they enter kindergarten ready to thrive and achieve early school success.

The early years of a child’s life are a critical time for learning, but we know that fewer than half of all children arrive at school with the necessary kindergarten readiness skills, with significant disparities by race and income. Parents and families are deeply committed to giving their children the strongest possible start, but often lack access to resources to maximize children’s cognitive, social, and emotional development.

Our Early Impact portfolio funds direct impact and ecosystem organizations that support families and early learning environments in expanding their use of evidence-based practices that are proven to make a difference in the early lives of children, setting them on the path toward early and later school success.

Our Learnings

Early childhood plays a critical role in later school success.

There is widespread underinvestment and fragmentation in early childhood.

Chronic absenteeism has increased, which is particularly detrimental for young students.

Opportunities for various types of play—a critical component of children’s development—have been declining.

Family engagement solutions and parent coaching continue to show impact on child outcomes.

Grantee Spotlight

Learn more about some of the work funded by the Early Impact portfolio.

Centering Healthcare Institute

Improving children’s outcomes through group-based prenatal and pediatric healthcare.

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Combining professional development for early childhood educators with coaching and parent education.

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Improving early language skills through “talk pedometer” technology.

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Springboard Collaborative

Connecting home and school to close the early literacy gap.

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Scaling the use of AI-powered translation to strengthen teachers’ connections to non-English speaking families.

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Tools of the Mind

Combining comprehensive Pre-K and kindergarten curriculum with educator professional development to support executive function skills for children.

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Our Approach

Support Parents and Families

Develop and scale sustainable parent/family support programs that improve healthy birth outcomes, early relational health, and home learning environments.

Our Approach

Improve Early Learning Environments

Improve the quality of early learning environments by increasing the availability of high-quality instructional materials and aligned professional development, family engagement solutions, and push-in supports that increase adult to child ratios.

Our Approach

Spread Best Practices

Accelerate the spread of best practices and evidence-based decision-making in early childhood through knowledge generation, measurement improvement, and field building.

A nurse helps a mom engage her infant with toys. Image provided by Nurse-Family Partnership.
Children ride tricycles outside their preschool. Image provided by Campaign for Grade Level Reading.

Our Questions

What impact do family engagement approaches have on reducing chronic absenteeism in the early grades? To what extent does this impact students’ academic and social-emotional skills?

What is the impact of our grantees’ high-reach programs when implemented at-scale?

Other Portfolios