Center for Urban Research and Learning

Loyola University Chicago

Here you will find all of CURL's research projects and publications. 

Building for the Future: Continuing the McCormick Foundation’s Initiative for the Professional Development of Childcare Educators

(6/1/2010 - 6/30/2013)

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In 2003, The McCormick Foundation (formerly the McCormick Tribune Foundation) partnered with CURL to coordinate a new kind of project to collaboratively create sustainable protocols for professional development in early childhood education programs. This project was called Creating Community Connections:  A Neighborhood Approach For Improving Early Childhood Education Programs.  To that end, McCormick invested in agency-sponsored childcare programs to enhance organizational health and build their capacity to recruit, train, and retain high quality directors and teachers, thereby sustaining high quality childcare programming.


To sustain this collaborative network of mutual support CURL continued to utilize this collaborative (inter- and intra-agency) and cohort-based (i.e. policy fellows and program leaders) model for two years (2010-2012) with four goals:

  1. Professional Development: Continue targeted financial support of the participating agencies’ program quality and professional development opportunities for classroom staff;

  2. Programmatic Health and Opportunities: Utilize community assessment data profiles and other sources of data to facilitate each agency’s ability to proactively address changes in their community, funding, and programming;

  3. Policy: Expand policy voice of the eight agencies via formal dialogue with key stakeholders in the field of early childhood education including advocates, elected officials, and funding bodies;

  4. “Vibrant Agencies in Changing Times” workshops/seminars: Collaboratively develop a series of workshops and/or seminars on how to best adapt and lead our agencies and programs in the midst of a changing landscape.