What everyone’s saying!

From Our Partners

Kelly Suchy, Smart Start Administrator, Putnam City Schools

"There is a direct correlation between high quality early childhood programs and later school success for all children. The partnership between Putnam City Schools and Smart Start Central Oklahoma provides Early Birds to families with children birth to age 5. Through this school readiness program, parents are equipped to be their child's first teacher; benefitting not only the child, but ultimately the entire community."

Kelly Kay, Vice President/Chief Operating Officer, YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City

“We have enjoyed the opportunity to work with Smart Start Central Oklahoma. Their work to convene leaders in business, education, non-profit and faith-based organizations along with other community stakeholders, to address the achievement gap is unprecedented in our community. Smart Start Central Oklahoma is raising awareness and focusing efforts to improve reading on grade level, reducing summer learning loss, addressing early learning readiness and increasing school attendance, and we are excited to be included in this work. This partnership has helped the YMCA to build important relationships to better meet needs in the community and has connected us to resources to improve program outcomes. The staff at Smart Start Central Oklahoma and their volunteers bring incredible passion, energy and expertise to some of the greatest challenges facing our kids and their future promise.”

Drew Dugan, Vice President, Education & Workforce Development, Greater Oklahoma City Chamber

“The Greater Oklahoma City Chamber’s priority is economic development and growing our economy. That said we also recognize that providing high quality education from PreK through higher education is the most fundamental form of economic development. Education is critical to the future growth of our economy and community.

The Chamber demands higher standards and expects educators to continue to improve, but we know they need help. One of the key ways we improve education is to create partnerships with established organizations like Smart Start Central Oklahoma that will help do the critical work that needs to be done on a personal and school-to-school level.

The Chamber provides resources and connections to volunteers. Smart Start Central Oklahoma and their team of pros make sure our support is directed where it can really make a difference. Improving the lives and opportunities of our children requires support of the whole community and we are so pleased to be part of the effort.”

Gayla Goff, Library Media Specialist, Horace Mann & Sequoyah Elementaries, Oklahoma City Public Schools

“Smart Start Central Oklahoma truly offers a smart start for young children! Children who come in shy and afraid of the school setting become confident learners. They learn English, letters, numbers and, most importantly, that school can be a fun and safe place to learn. They love coming to school after attending Smart Start in the Schools sessions. Our little Smart Start friends enter PreK at the top of their classes, achieving well. Those children and their families still enjoy coming to the library together! Thank you, Smart Start, for helping us get our children ready to succeed in school!”

From Our Early Bird Parents

“The materials we received in the class are helping him with what he is learning in the school”

Parent from John Glenn Elementary, Western Heights Public Schools

“When I took my baby to the well child visit the doctor told me she was doing more things babies do at this age”

Parent from Council Grove Elementary, Western Heights Public Schools

“The instructors are always so good-very knowledgeable and positive. Thank you”
“I appreciate you giving us the opportunity to learn and have a guide to educate our children.”
“Helped me learn how to  teach my child to read.”
“I believe this program is very valuable to all parents.”
“I’m very excited to come to all the classes. I feel like I can tell other people and put my knowledge to use. Thank you.”
“I learned to be patient with my son.”
“I really love the open discussion and having conversation with parents that have kids my age. Thank you!”
“I am better at playing with my grandkids”
“We enjoy time together more. She is learning so much more because of the program.”
“My son is learning new thing and helps him in Pre-k”

Parent from Council Grove Elementary, Western Heights Public Schools

“I believe he is learning more new things everyday”

Parent from Cesar Chavez, Oklahoma City Public Schools

“I know I can help him to develop well”

Parent from Cesar Chavez, Oklahoma City Public Schools

“I love this program! It's been beneficial to my kids and me. So sad this will be my last one! Thank you.”
“Very useful to learn and know how to handle the needs of my children.”
“I connect much more with my baby.”
“The information given to me is excellent in helping me raise my daughter.”
“Ms. Bumgarner is excellent. I always leave with very useful information to use to help my child become a better learner.”
“I was re-inspired to read and play with my son everyday!”
“My child love the books! Beg to be read to every night.”
“I spend more quality time with my child. I’ve learned better ways to handle behavior issues and daily discipline.”

From Our Staff

Vicki Land, Smart Start Central Oklahoma

"It's great to see how the community is beginning to embrace home visiting as a valuable way to reach out to families with the support that all families need."

Stacy Dykstra, PhD, Smart Start Central Oklahoma

“Parenting contributes directly to healthy children, strong families and thriving communities.  It is challenging, fulfilling, and ever-changing and I couldn't do it without the support of my husband, my father, my sister, my girlfriends, and my coworkers."

Steve Potts, Smart Start Central Oklahoma Board Chair

"The Science is undeniable.  Spending focused, dollars on children 0 to 5 years of age builds a strong and productive citizenry.  It is a win-win outcome. We have kids who are better prepared to meet today's challenges while it also creates a reduced incarceration rate in the State of Oklahoma. Smart Start of Central Oklahoma is truly making a difference, and that is why I am such a vigorous supporter."