Another Bright Beginning…

César will start kindergarten in August. When he does, he won’t just be “kindergarten ready.” He is performing above average for his age in cognitive, literacy, and social/emotional skills. He will enter school for the first time already well-acclimated to a classroom environment. He will start with the ability to count from one to fifty, to identify colors, to read small books, to sing the English and Spanish alphabets, and to happily and constructively socialize with other children. César even writes in full sentences. He will not be one of the 16 percent of Collier County Public School students who have been identified to have limited English proficiency ( In fact, he’s proficient in two languages.

If César and his mother hadn’t been part of Grace Place’s Bright Beginnings program since he was one-month old, the start of his academic career could easily have been a rocky one. César’s family lives with an income below the poverty line and speaks primarily Spanish at home. When César finishes middle school, he will have been in school longer than either of his parents. Children who grow up in environments with these risk factors are frequently among the 34 percent of children in Collier County who start kindergarten unprepared (Future Ready Collier), and many will continue to struggle throughout their academic careers.
Because of his parents’ determination and commitment to their child’s education, Grace Place’s Bright Beginnings program, and the support of generous people like you, César has cleared the first major hurdle toward a lifetime of achievement and prosperity. Together, we are moving the needle.