History

South Carolina First Steps to School Readiness was signed into law in 1999 to help improve school readiness for the state’s youngest learners. First Steps is a comprehensive, results-oriented statewide education initiative to help prepare children to reach first grade healthy and ready to succeed.

Each South Carolina county has a First Steps partnership comprised of business and community leaders, early education professionals, parents, faith-based and agency partners. First Steps partnerships examine unmet needs in their communities to help local young children and their families. Through its 501(c) 3 status, First Steps mobilizes resources beyond state-allocated dollars, leveraging local private and public funds, federal grants, planned gifts, in-kind contributions, and volunteer time.

From the First Steps Enabling Legislation

“There is established South Carolina First Steps to School Readiness, a comprehensive, results-oriented initiative for improving early childhood development by providing, through county partnerships, public and private funds and support for high-quality early childhood development and education services for children by providing support for their families’ efforts toward enabling their children to reach school ready to learn.” – SECTION 59-152-10 (June 1999)

York County First Steps has worked to build a firm foundation of collaborative partnerships with many organizations and agencies in our community. Since our mission is to help children prepare for success in school, our strong partnerships with the four School Districts, York, Clover, Rock Hill and Fort Mill, have been and will continue to be critical to our success. There have been many passionate and dedicated Board Members that have helped provide the needed foundation to work effectively with our community partners in providing needed services.

As we look to the future, our goal is to build off that foundation so that we may expand our interventions to help more at risk children and their families with comprehensive and effective services.