When it comes to collective impact, collaboration is key to success. So what happens when something major—even historically major, like a world-changing pandemic—comes along to make it hard or impossible for people to come together? If you’re Future Ready Collier, you learn to make it work. And you celebrate when finally everyone can again gather in a room. After all, Future Ready Collier represents the best in education and learning practices. The network is primed to adapt in order to thrive. So, it was a big deal when the partners convened on August 24, 2022 for the first network-wide, school year kick-off in several years.
Future Ready Collier extends its gratitude to Collier County Public Schools (CCPS), who lent their own storytelling perspective to the proceedings. To watch a short video produced by CCPS, click here. CCPS has been a terrific supporter of Future Ready Collier, and their team and leadership demonstrated their continuing engagement in the network by showing up in full force. With about 90 registrants from across Future Ready Collier’s partners, the kick-off was a chance for everyone to join in what the network does best: share, learn, and create the circumstances to act.
As ever, there were some new faces in the room. This can include new team members of existing members of the partnership. It can also mean the network itself is growing to welcome additional organizations who have a stake in the wellbeing of children and families in Collier County. While the network’s goals are education-focused, the conversations are intentionally inclusive of the diverse factors that enable a student to learn and grow. This can encompass out-of-school enrichment, as well as physical and emotional wellness. It can also mean that the business community steps up to allow the conditions for working parents to earn a living and be present for their children. Some Future Ready Collier partners are especially interested in facilitating multi-generation learning success. For example, a parent who is empowered to complete their educational credentials is positioned to transition into stable work, which subsequently models success for children in the household, and offers better financial stability for the family.
Future Ready Collier has always been a team effort. The recent 2021-2022 annual update to the community illuminates some of the specific ways in which the network is always delivering for its community. The palpable energy in the room at events like the school year kick-off is a less tangible but no less real measurement of Future Ready Collier’s vitality. One attendee offered, during an introductory portion of the gathering during which participants got to speak openly about their goals and expectations for the year, “Future Ready Collier is the best thing that’s ever happened to Collier County.”
For those attracted to the boots-on-the-ground, committee-level work, September’s Goal Group meetings are coming up quickly on the 14th and 16th. Within the Early Development, School Success, and College and Career Success Goal groups, objectives for the school year will be identified across multiple priority teams. All Future Ready Collier participants are encouraged to join at least one priority team, according to their organizational and personal interests. The Goal Groups are open to new attendees, and you can learn specific details by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.