Apply now for Teacher Supply Boxes

Kids in Need Foundation provides FREE Teacher Supply Boxes for teachers in Title I schools, where the rate of free and reduced lunch is 70% or higher.

“Successful applicants will receive TWO large boxes containing a predetermined assortment of essential items, including pencils, scissors, paper, and notebooks,” the Foundation’s website says.

The 2018 application window is open now through August 19. Teachers can apply by clicking here.


IMPACT 360 Summer Success visit

LaTisha Vaughn-Brandon, TCCC’s Director of Networks and Community Engagement, visited IMPACT 360 Summer Success this week. She enjoyed reading with and getting to know so many students during the literacy hour!

“Every summer students from low socio-economic backgrounds fall two months behind peers from higher-income families in academic skills, a deficit that grows to a full academic year by fourth grade,” the Impact 360 Summer Success website says. “The consequences, both in performance and self-esteem, can be devastating for these students and our communities. In 2011, The Rand Corporation published a compelling report about this disturbing summer deficit. Impact 360 Summer Success wants to lead change for these students and the Charleston community.”

About 150 students participate in the six-week experience, which is produced collaboratively by more than 15 non-profits led by Kids on Point (formerly known as Charleston Urban Squash).


WCBD News 2: Teachers needed in all local school districts


Special thanks to Mayci McLeod, with WCBD News 2, for interviewing our CEO, John C. Read, today about the region’s teacher shortage.

Watch John’s interview at

Live 5 News: Local organization challenges state education system

Special thanks to Kolbie Satterfield, with Live 5 News, for stopping by TCCC to interview our CEO, John C. Read, about our advocacy letter!

Watch her story, which aired at 11 p.m. on July 11, at, and sign the letter at

Sign The Letter!

Together, we can do better. U.S. News and World Report ranks South Carolina 48th in the country for education, while our civic, business and faith leaders remain mostly silent. This is systems failure at its worst and at a very cost in human potential. It is no longer acceptable, if it ever was to begin with.

Members of the Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative (TCCC) Board of Directors have drafted a letter addressed to other leaders across the state. This letter, which demands better for all children and their families, is a first step in our advocacy efforts to provoke systemic improvement that results in significantly improved student outcomes.

Read the letter at

Along with dozens of other concerned citizens, I’ve signed this letter, and I’m asking you to sign it as well. Please email to have your name included.

Thank you for your support!


John C. Read

TCCC office closed for Independence Day

The Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative office at 6296 Rivers Avenue, Suite 308 in North Charleston will be closed on July 4 in honor of Independence Day.
Staff will return to the office on July 5.
We hope you have a safe, happy 4th of July!

KIDS COUNT ranks South Carolina 41st in education

The Annie E. Casey Foundation has released its annual KIDS COUNT Data Book. South Carolina ranks 41st in Education, 37th in Family and Community, 36th in Health and 34th in Economic Well-Being.

Some South Carolina data points from the report:

  • 74% of 8th graders not proficient in math
  • 71% of 4th graders not proficient in reading
  • 53% (63,000) children age 3-4 not in school
  • 41% (418,000) children in single-parent families
  • 23% (249,000) children living in poverty
  • 17% of high school students not graduating on time
  • 13% (138,000) children living in high-poverty areas
  • 12% (129,000) children in families where the household head lacks a high school diploma
  • 4% (44,000) children without health insurance

Local students win art scholarships from national nonprofit StriveTogether

Two students in the tri-county region were named recipients of the Art Inspires scholarship by StriveTogether, a national nonprofit working to improve education for every child. Students in nearly 70 communities across the county were asked to create pieces of art that reflect StriveTogether’s vision and core values, including educational equity.

Lauren DeMarco

Lauren DeMarco

Only students in a community served by a partnership in the StriveTogether Cradle to Career Network were eligible to apply. Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative (TCCC), which serves Berkeley, Charleston and Dorchester counties, is a StriveTogether partnership.

Lauren DeMarco and Camille Richmond are two Charleston-area student artists among five total awardees chosen nationwide. The scholarship winners each will receive a $1,000 college scholarship and have their work displayed at StriveTogether’s Cincinnati headquarters.

“As the cost of higher education continues to increase, paying for college has financially strained many of our students. Opportunities, like the Art Inspires scholarship, to help cover those costs are more important than ever,” TCCC CEO John C. Read said. “We, at TCCC, are proud of these talented artists from our very own community and congratulate them on their exceptional work.”

Lauren DeMarco, who graduated from Academic Magnet High School in North Charleston, is attending Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, N.C., where she plans to major in English and visual art. As an aspiring magazine writer and editor, DeMarco spends her time tutoring and mentoring low-income students, and she hopes to one day create a magazine for girls that encourages their academic ability and promotes their achievements. DeMarco’s winning art piece depicts a student climbing a staircase, representing the overall educational journey to which every child should have the right.

Lauren DeMarco

Camille Richmond

Camille Richmond, who plans to major in international business and economics at the University of South Carolina, just graduated from the Charleston County School of the Arts. Throughout high school, Richmond volunteered with the local community center, the Felix Pinckney Community Center, where she tutored first-graders and learned valuable lessons about the importance of providing early educational opportunities to decrease the achievement gap in the education system.

“My community has been the leading driving force encouraging me to want to give back,” Richmond said. “My eyes were opened to the many obstacles facing low-income, working parents, one of which is finding safe, reliable and affordable child care. As children need to be educated and encouraged to aim high from the very beginning, early education programs can decrease the achievement gap in our public education system.”

Richmond’s artistic display of this ongoing effort is just one of many ways StriveTogether seeks to garner support and awareness of this important cause.

“StriveTogether commends these young artists who were so keenly able to depict our realities and societal goals with their artistic vision and talent,” said StriveTogether President and CEO Jennifer Blatz. “With this scholarship, StriveTogether hopes to encourage these students as they pursue higher education to continue to be creative and express their own views, especially through their art.”

To view a PDF version of this press release, click here.

Jackson, Postlewait elected to TCCC Board of Directors

Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative (TCCC), a nonprofit organization that works to improve educational outcomes for all, has added new board members.

On June 20, the TCCC Board of Directors elected Jessica Jackson, director of Boeing Global Engagement for the Southeast, and Gerrita Postlewait, superintendent of the Charleston County School District, to serve three-year terms.

Jackson oversees the charitable investment strategy and employee engagement for Boeing sites across the Southeast. She has a master’s degree from Georgetown University and previously served as a vice president at the S.C. Federal Credit Union and director of communications at the Maryland Hospital Association. Jackson also served as a TCCC board member from 2013 to 2016 and is currently convener of TCCC’s High School Graduation Network.

Jackson replaces Joan Robinson-Berry on the board. Robinson-Berry, who was vice president and general manager of Boeing South Carolina, was recently promoted to vice president of engineering, maintenance and modifications for Boeing Global Services in Texas. She joined the TCCC board in October 2016 and stepped down earlier this month.

Postlewait was named CCSD’s superintendent in 2015. She previously served as the assistant vice president for ACT in Iowa, chief K-12 officer for The Stupski Foundation in California and superintendent of the Horry County School District. Postlewait is a graduate of West Virginia University and has served on TCCC’s Lowcountry Education Consortium since 2015.

Postlewait replaces Joe Pye on the board. Pye, superintendent of Dorchester School District 2, joined the TCCC board in June 2015 and recently completed a three-year term.

“I am pleased that Jessica Jackson and Gerrita Postlewait have joined the TCCC Board of Directors. Their energy and ideas are sure to make an important impact on our dynamic board,” said Anita Zucker, CEO of The InterTech Group and chair of the TCCC Board. “I am incredibly grateful for the work and leadership of Joan Robinson-Berry and Joe Pye. They were both tremendous assets and will be missed.”

To view a PDF version of this press release, click here.

TCCC receives $40,000 grant to focus on FAFSA

National College Access Network (NCAN) has selected Tri-County Cradle to Career Collaborative (TCCC) to receive a $40,000 grant for the 2018-2019 FAFSA Completion Challenge.

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) provides grants, loans and work-study funds to students and is a pivotal part in many students’ decision to attend college. NCAN challenges each of the 25 grant receipts to increase their city’s FAFSA completion rates by at least 5 percentage points for the graduating high school class of 2019.

TCCC will work in partnership with Charleston County School District, the City of Charleston and Trident Technical College over the next year to meet that goal.

“Many of our most promising, college-bound students miss out on Pell Grant opportunities and other forms of financial aid because they don’t complete the FAFSA,” TCCC CEO John C. Read said. “This NCAN grant will empower TCCC and our partners to help more students get the financial assistance they need to attend and successfully complete college.”

The Kresge Foundation and Great Lakes Higher Education Corporation & Affiliates funded the grant. The 2018-2019 competition builds on the success of the original Kresge-funded 2016-2017 FAFSA Completion Challenge.

“The 2016-17 Challenge demonstrated that cities could achieve significant progress in just one school year by working collaboratively across sectors to give students the FAFSA completion support they need,” said Caroline Altman Smith, Kresge’s deputy director for its education program. “This is a high-leverage investment for philanthropy because the FAFSA enables students to tap into huge amounts of government resources that often go unclaimed.”

NCAN will award a $100,000 grand prize in September 2019 to one of the 25 cities based on a holistic review of the percentage growth in completions, adoption of effective strategies, barriers overcome and likelihood of sustainability.

To view a PDF version of this press release, click here.