The Illinois State Board of Education believes that a high-quality, intentionally aligned education system from birth to third grade is essential for the success of the State’s highest-need children and is committed to ensure a high-quality, comprehensive system of teaching, learning, and support for children from birth through third grade. In order to more effectively serve Illinois children and families, the State worked to align and transform state and local systems to assure collective impact across service sectors.
In 2015, the federal Preschool Development Grant – Expansion (PDG-E) funding allowed the State to partner with Illinois State University (ISU) to establish and implement a comprehensive system of supports for the birth-to-third grade alignment, the Birth-to-Third Grade (B-3) Continuity Project. The B-3 Continuity Project launched with seven communities that received broad supports from ISU supported by this funding. In the subsequent years, the project grew to provide access to varying levels of support through annual conferences, webinars, and technical assistance to over seventy communities throughout Illinois.
The mission of B-3 state support was to strengthen Preschool Expansion communities' ability to develop a high quality, intentionally aligned education system from birth-to-third grade. This is accomplished through one or more B-3 approaches led by a team of community stakeholders. To see how your community aligns with B-3 strategies communities can use the
B-3 Self-Assessment and Action Planning Guide.