Happy holidays!

TCCC volunteers at Lowcountry Food Bank

The TCCC staff had a great time today sorting, cleaning and packaging cans at the Lowcountry Food Bank.

Along with our fellow volunteers from Harris Teeter, we packaged 4,365 pounds of food!

TCCC Board of Directors welcomes Rev. Nelson B. Rivers, III

Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative, a non-profit organization that works to improve educational outcomes for all students, has added a new board member.

On December 19, the TCCC Board of Directors elected Rev. Nelson B. Rivers, III – pastor of Charity Missionary Baptist Church in North Charleston and vice president of religious affairs and external relations for the National Action Network – to serve a 2.5-year term. 

Rev. Nelson B. Rivers, III
Rev. Nelson B. Rivers, III

Rivers was ordained at the Olivet Baptist Church of Christ in Georgia and has preached at churches in 23 states. He became pastor of Charity Missionary Baptist Church in the Liberty Hill community of North Charleston in September 2008.

Rivers joined the National Action Network in July 2014, and he spent nearly 40 years working in various positions at the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), including as president of the North Charleston Branch, executive director of the S.C. State Conference, director of the Southeast Region, vice president of field operations and chief operating officer.  

Rivers was a leading organizer of a civil rights demonstration in January 2000, when more than 50,000 marched to Columbia to demand the removal of the Confederate flag, and he was there in 2015 when the flag was removed from statehouse grounds.

He received his bachelor’s degree from Wilberforce University in Ohio and is pursuing his Master of Divinity at Erskine Theological Seminary in Due West.

“I am very pleased to welcome Rev. Nelson Rivers, III, to the board. I have no doubt that his experiences in civil rights activism and grassroots organizing will bring valuable contributions to our work going forward,” said Anita Zucker, CEO of The InterTech Group and chair of the TCCC Board of Directors. “I look forward to working closely with the reverend on ways we can improve educational outcomes for all students.”

TRIP! training

About a dozen of our partners spent an hour on December 12 discussing the Tri-County Region Improvement Process (TRIP!) and how it can be used across feeder patterns to make systems change.

In 2014, TCCC created and deployed TRIP! across its networks, consortia and project teams to guide collaborative work. Using funding provided by The Duke Endowment, one of the largest private foundations in the Southeast, TCCC is expanding the tools available within TRIP! and assisting direct-service providers in the region in becoming more results-based.

Thanks to all those who participated!

Opinion: ‘South Carolina education system needs major overhaul to fix inequities’


TCCC CEO, John Read, has an opinion piece in The Post and Courier today about the need for an education system overhaul in the state of South Carolina.

“Many will view with disbelief and distrust the prospect of real reform taking place. We haven’t seen a governor take a serious interest in education since Gov. Richard Riley, and the number of studies and reports detailing what’s wrong with CCSD could fill a library. Incidentally, similar problems can also be observed in Dorchester and Berkeley counties,” Read says. “What’s needed is a movement of parents, teachers, civic and business leaders, ‘if onlys,’ naysayers and distrusters to demand the transformation of public education here.”

Read the full opinion piece at: https://www.postandcourier.com/opinion/commentary/south-carolina-education-system-needs-major-overhaul-to-fix-inequities/article_4f8a5306-fa7e-11e8-9dd1-f7d71fcbdc7d.html

TCCC accepting resumes for Communications and Administration Associate

Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative (TCCC) welcomes applications for the position of Communications and Administration Associate, available immediately. This position is part-time, working 10-20 hours per week, and reports directly to the Director of Communications and Operations. The work schedule will be based on the needs of the Director and TCCC staff.

Responsibilities include, but are not limited to:

  • Communications: Draft content for website, social media, newsletters, reports and press releases.
  • Fundraising: Confidentially maintain database of partners and donors, and draft grant applications and donor letters.
  • Meeting Coordination: Schedule meetings, prepare agendas and materials, track attendance and draft minutes for various meetings.
  • Event Planning: Draft and send invitations, track RSVPs, prepare nametags and order supplies.

Duties, responsibilities and activities may change, and new ones may be assigned at any time, with or without notice.

Qualifications include:

  • Associate degree or higher, or equivalent previous work experience.
  • Excellent written and verbal communication skills.
  • Demonstrable attention to detail, integrity, organization and administration skills in prior work.
  • Ability to work independently and collaboratively in a fast-paced office environment.
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Office required; proficiency in WordPress and Adobe Creative Suite preferred.

Compensation commensurate with experience.

Contact: Send resume and three writing samples to Ashley Heffernan, Director of Communications and Operations, at Ashley@TriCountyCradleToCareer.org.

About Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative

Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative (TCCC) is a community-wide movement in Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties, South Carolina, focused on improving the quality of life of its citizens and its workforce through education. Using data and focused community collaboration across a continuum from “cradle-to-career,” TCCC serves as a catalyst for widespread, systemic change, with the ultimate goal of increased success and economic prosperity for all.

Click here to view a PDF of this job description.

Kindergarten Readiness Network meeting

Special thanks to all those Kindergarten Readiness Network (KRN) members who attended today’s meeting to receive updates on various projects and provide feedback on the work going forward!

Notes from the meeting:

  • The KRN’s newborn home-visitation project team is working with the Medical University of South Carolina to develop a pilot project that will incorporate techniques from both Family Connects and MUSC’s telehealth program. The goal is to launch the pilot in the summer of 2019. If successful, the project will be made available to all tri-county hospitals, which serve a combined 9,500 births annually.
  • Bryan Boroughs, with the Institute for Child Success, is working with the KRN to develop a Birth to 8 Framework that is intended to help the network determine priorities for its next phase of work.
  • The TCCC staff is reviewing and discussing different definitions of “equity” in an attempt to establish a new one that can serve to align TCCC’s work with other organizations in the region committed to this end. Members of the KRN and Community Engagement Committee have been asked to provide feedback on varying definitions already in use and help redefine equity for the community.
  • Rev. Bill Stanfield provided an update on the Metanoia Early Childhood Center in the Chicora-Cherokee neighborhood of North Charleston.
  • TCCC staffers LaTisha Vaughn and John Read spoke about the Kindergarten Readiness Network’s purpose and TCCC’s definition of equity.
  • Trident United Way’s Vice President of Evaluation and Public Policy, Jonathan Rauh, shared Reading by Third data, and TCCC’s Director of Data Management and Analysis, Sarah Piwinski, shared 2017-18 Kindergarten Readiness Assessment (KRA) results.
  • TCCC’s newest staff member, Thetyka Robinson, Director of Facilitation, introduced herself to the network and led a discussion on who else needs to be in the room.

Lowcountry College and Career Ready Project

Members of the new Lowcountry College and Career Ready Project, a project of the High School Graduation Network and the Lowcountry Education Consortium, met for the first time in December.

The project is convened by Dr. Kevin O’Gorman, chief academic officer for Berkeley County School District.

The tri-county region’s four regional school districts share the common goal of ensuring that students are “future ready,” as defined by both academic standards and the soft skills identified by the local business community in the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce’s Common Skills in High Demand report. The report outlines the core expectations for entry-level positions within various career clusters and determines the specific academic proficiencies as well as attributes such as team-working, problem-solving and punctuality required for “readiness.”

The Lowcountry College and Career Ready Project is working on ways to embed these soft skills into the PreK-12th grade school curricula, create a regional report card and begin redesigning other aspects of the system (e.g., teacher professional development, instructional coaching, classroom observation, after school and summer activities) to reflect these new expectations.