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George Kaiser Family Foundation

$25 million

The George Kaiser Family Foundation plans new and renewed commitments of more than $125 million over five years in support of high-quality early childhood education programs and related parent engagement efforts for at-risk families with children from birth through three years of age. Over the last eight years, the Foundation has spent approximately $20 million each year in creating new, high-quality, center-based early childhood programs, training early education teachers, improving maternal/child health and birth-spacing, launching job-training programs and prison-diversion efforts, and developing mixed income housing and various other initiatives—all focused toward providing equal opportunity for Tulsa’s youngest and most vulnerable children and their families.

The Foundation will expand its efforts with these children and families through an additional commitment of $25 million over five years to provide more early childhood school sites and a community-wide engagement initiative which will include parents, caregivers, teachers, businesspeople, pediatricians and pastors, alongside other community members, to improve the quality of adult and child interactions for Tulsa’s youngest children. This parent engagement effort is designed to extend the impact of high-quality, center-based education, currently serving 2,000 infants and toddlers, and reach the 20,000 children who are eligible but not receiving full-time, quality early learning. It will start with a visit in the hospital with every parent of a newborn in Tulsa before the baby is discharged and continue in pediatric offices, intensive group parenting classes and monthly literacy activities, all reinforced through religious institutions, day care centers, media, and text messaging. The goal is to make Tulsa the first community in the country where every parent or caregiver is a teacher and every home is a preschool.