In the fall of 2018, The Child & Family Network Centers (CFNC) was awarded a team of consultants from Compass Pro Bono (compassprobono.org) to help us evaluate a few critical questions related to our strategic plan:
1) In 2018, enrollment into CFNC’s free preschool program slowed – what happened?
2) CFNC’s operational and strategic growth scenarios – where should our classrooms really be?
3) Are their opportunities for growth? Where should those classrooms be and can CFNC afford to grow?
4) How can CFNC better market itself to families?
To tackle these large, imperative questions, Compass connected CFNC with eight talented, intelligent, and generous consultants in the area. As a team, they worked incredibly hard to strategically guide us into a sustainable, thriving future in which we continue to be a strong provider of preschool education.
The Compass team made several recommendations for moving forward, all which CFNC plans to implement.
First, they determined there is no lack of needy children in Alexandria for our services. They surmised that the slow enrollment was due in part to a need to increase advertising and raise awareness for our services.
According to their research, in the 2018-2019 school year, there were 238 children who qualified for CFNC’s free preschool services, but did not attend preschool. Through interviews and data analysis, Compass determined the West End of Alexandria had the greatest concentration of children who did not attend preschool, as well as large concentration of families who qualify based on income for CFNC’s program.
Their recommendation – CFNC needs to increase its presence in the West End to give as many children as possible access to high quality, free early education that will set them up for kindergarten, and for life.
With that in mind, CFNC identified space at Landmark Towers on S. Whiting Street for 2.5 classrooms that will open in Fall 2019. Throughout the summer of 2019, CFNC will build out the new space, as well as a brand-new playground, to serve our classrooms and the community. In September, CFNC will be relocating two of our current classrooms to this location to help better serve the community with classroom locations in the community we serve. In the future, CFNC will have the opportunity to add 9 additional spots for students at this location if funding allows.
Thanks to Compass’ incredibly hard work over countless volunteer hours, CFNC can provide much needed early education services to children in the West End of Alexandria. We look forward to sharing more about our West End classrooms in the future!
*CFNC is actively fundraising for the construction, materials, classroom furniture and supplies, as well as the playground. If you’re interested in contributing to the project, click here or contact Maggie Klefstad, Development Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org or 703-836-0214 ext 238