Great Start Newaygo County

Purpose and Backgroundnewaygo gslogo

The Newaygo County Great Start Collaborative consists of members from various backgrounds, including business, nonprofit, religious, schools, and parents. The goal is to coordinate and assist in the improvement of services geared toward children under the age of 6 to make sure that all children arrive at school ready and interested in learning.

Funding for the Great Start Collaborative is provided through the Early Childhood Investment Corporation (ECIC). The Early Childhood Investment Corporation was established in 2005 through an interlocal agreement pursuant to the Urban Cooperation Act of 1967 (Act 7, P.A. 1967 [Ex. Sess.], Sections 124.501 – 124.512 of the Michigan Compiled Laws) between the Michigan Department of Human Services (DHS), a principal department of the State of Michigan, and participating intermediate school districts (ISD’s), bodies corporate established as authorized under Part 7 of the Revised School Code, Act 451, P.A. 1976, as amended.

Core ResponsibilitiesKids-Great-Start-Star

  • Conduct a community needs assessment
  • Adopt and enact a strategic plan for the development of a comprehensive system of early childhood services and supports, accessible to all children from birth to kindergarten and their families
  • Seek additional public and private funds to support the Great Start system locally
  • Provide a defined and accountable set of resources and serviced for children with disabilities, developmental delays, or special needs, or at risk of same, and their families
  • Coordinate existing early childhood programs
  • Expand high-quality child care capacity
  • Evaluate the system on the basis of expected outcomes

Additional Activities

  • Bi-monthly parent newsletter of local, free/low-cost activities for families and children
  • The Great Start Parent Coalition provides support to parents to develop skills in advocating for early childhood supports and services
  • Health and nutrition classes, a collaboration with MSU Extension and District Health Dept. #10
  • Community Gardens in Fremont, Newaygo, and White Cloud

Participating Agencies and Organizations

Building Bridges Preschool  MSU Extension 
CMH (Newaygo Co. Mental Health) Newaygo Co. Child Care Providers
DHS (Department of Human Services) Newaygo Co. Day Care Corporation
District Health Dept. #10 Newaygo Co. Probate Court
Early On NC RESA (Newaygo Co. Regional Educational Service Agency)
Family Health Care Parents as Teachers Program
Fremont Area Community Foundation Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial
Gerber Foundation ...and all Newaygo County public school districts
Great Start to Quality Western Resource Center  
Michigan School Readiness Program       

Lead Agency

NC RESA (Newaygo County Regional Educational Service Agency)


Karen Clark
Great Start Coordinator
This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
(231) 652-3604


The Newaygo County Great Start Collaborative meets on the second Friday of January, March, May, July, September from 12:00 - 2:00 p.m. at the Newaygo County Regional Educational Service Agency Multi-Media Room A/B (unless otherwise noted).


September 12, 2014 - 12:00 p.m. at NC RESA Multi-Media Room A/B


Newaygo Co. Great Start Parent Coalition Facebook Page

Kids Count Data 2013