Hard to Reach Grant, "Why Isn't Johnny in Preschool"


There are many children in Illinois that are at high risk for school failure and are eligible for high quality early learning, but their families are not using the care available. The goal of this grant is to target these hard to reach families with innovative approaches for getting the children enrolled and participating regularly in high quality early learning programs. Families may be hard to reach or reluctant to engage in high quality early learning for many reasons. This grant provides an opportunity to test and evaluate some promising theories for solutions.

Applicants should present bold, creative, and innovative ideas to pilot strategies to enroll and retain the hardest to reach children in high quality care. These ideas may include testing policy changes, but must provide evidence that the proper waivers have been attained or have a plan for attaining those waivers. The chosen pilots will coordinate with a university in the state designated to collect data and the university will provide the Council with an evaluation of each pilot program.  Amount of Award:For additional context on why children are not participating in high quality early learning please refer to "Why Isn't Johnny in Preschool" by Community Organizing and Family Issues (COFI).

Award Amounts:

Grants will be awarded to up to 6 applicants. There is $300,000 for this total project funded by the Federal American Recovery and Reinvestment Act.

Application Deadline:

Webinar: Thursday, October 6 from 1:00-2:30 Please RSVP to by September 30.

Hard copies of the final applications are due October 31st at 5pm and should be submitted to:

DHS - Bureau of Child Care

Attn: Susan Hix, State Advisory Council

400 W. Lawrence

1st floor West

Springfield, IL 62704


Office of Early Childhood Development Hard to Reach Grant Opportunity


Summary Prepared by:

K.B. 9/27/11