Pennsylvania Early Learning keys to QualityThe NW Regional Key collaborates with regional early learning and school-age partners to support positive outcomes for children.

Pre K Counts is an initiative to build and strengthen pre-kindergarten partnerships.

United Way of Erie plays a unique role both as a leader in the health/human services sector.

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Accredited Under the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations’ Standards for Excellence®

News and Events

Here are some pics from yesterday’s field trip to visit the Erie Bayhawks. It was lots of fun. We got to read books, try on actual jerseys, tour the building, touch a real basketball hoop and take lots of pics. Had a blast, can’t wait to see them again in January!!!
CC SA visit Bayhawks 11-26 #1

CC SA visit Bayhawks 11-26 #7 CC SA visit Bayhawks 11-26 #9


 

Aubrea Haynes - 4

Arthur’s Thanksgiving was a great choice of books to read to the preschool children at City Center last week. They enjoyed having Aubrea  Haynes from the Erie County Clerk’s office share the story of Arthur’s dilemma of who will play the part of the turkey in the school play.

Aubrea Haynes - 3


Llama Llama Red Pajama

Preschool children at City Center were delighted to have Kim Thomas, Northwest Regional Director, DCED, read Llama Llama Red Pajama to them. We hope she will visit us again soon! Kim Thomas - Oct 30- DCED-NAP--2


 

Mad Mex Fundraiser

Staff, Board members, family and friends gathered at Mad  Mex on November 13th in support of Early Connections. Food, fun, and raffles were part of an exciting evening!! Thank you to those who attended, those who donated, and especially to our chairperson, Kiwanian Linda Smalley!


 

Honoring Veterans!

Early Connections children created artwork to thank our local Veterans. Their artwork is proudly displayed at Texas Roadhouse restaurant.

EC art at Texas Roadhouse - 3


 

Youth Awards Recognition

Congratulations to Megan Bruno and Jessica Lewis for having been recognized at the UnifiedErie Youth Awards ceremony on October 11, 2018! The Youth Work Awards honor amazing adults in our community who go above and beyond to help all young people feel supported, valued and engaged.20181011_104744

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Thank you for believing in our children, Scott Enterprises!

Scotts - school supplies 2

School supplies were collected by Scott Enterprise Employees for our school-age children at Early Connections. Along with all of the supplies was a letter, each from Nick Jr. and Chris Scott, which helped provide our children with a “can-do” attitude for the school year. 

 Scotts - school supplies 1
Pictured in front row:  Darlene Kovacs, Executive Director, Early Connections. Second row, left to right:  Christine Simon, Director of Human Resources, Scott Enterprises; Sharon Johannesmeyer, Safety Manager, Scott Enterprises; Nick Scott Jr, Vice President, Scott Enterprises; Michelle Harkins, Associate Executive Director, Early Connections.


 

Early Connections welcomed John Persinger, CEO of the Erie Downtown Development Corporation, as a Reach and Read Guest Reader in one of our preschool classrooms. Thank you for visiting us!

Early Connections welcomed John Persinger, CEO of the Erie Downtown Development Corporation, as a Reach and Read Guest Reader in one of our preschool classrooms. Thank you for visiting us!

John Persinger (9-26-18) - 1


 

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NOW OPEN!

Early Connections West Ridge
5739 West Ridge Road, Building C
Accepting enrollments for infants through preschool
Hours: Monday through Friday
7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
CCIS accepted
Call 835-8105 for more information.

Highlights

City Center staff Megan Bruno-Osborne, Carissa Kepple, Kelly Ocasio, and Meghan Snider represented Early Connections at the Millcreek Mall’s recent annual Gingerbread House competition. They did an awesome job decorating EC’s house!


 

City Center preschool children were excited to have Alicia Evers and Conor Dawley from Highmark Caring Place visit them recently. They read “The Good Bye Book” and did a fish craft.  Thank you for donating the book to our classroom so we can read it again and again!


 

We Love Books!

book photo op
Early Connections is grateful for the Erie Kiwanis, who secured a grant from Constellation Energy to purchase books through Hooked on Books for Kids.  Pictured left to right presenting one of our City Center preschool classrooms books are Erie Kiwanis President Bill Sapone, and Kiwanis Joe Murphy.

book photo op2
                                                                           

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

Preschool children at City Center welcomed guest reader Nicole Reitzell from Erie Downtown Development Corporation. Thank you for reading one of our favorite books, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom!

nicole reitzell reader3


 

This week our City Center welcomed Jennifer Weigold-Geertson, Senior Manager of Community Relations at UPMC Health Plan, to observe Curriculum Gold in action and read to one of our preschool classrooms. Curriculum Gold was purchased because of the generosity and partnership of UPMC Health Plan through the Neighborhood Assistance Program. Thanks for reading to our preschoolers about families, Jenny! We look forward to seeing you again soon.

This week our City Center welcomed Jennifer Weigold-Geertson, Senior Manager of Community Relations at UPMC Health Plan, to observe Teaching Strategy’s Creative Curriculum in action and read to one of our preschool classrooms. Creative Curriculum was purchased because of the generosity and partnership of UPMC Health Plan through the Neighborhood Assistance Program. Thanks for reading to our preschoolers about families, Jenny! We look forward to seeing you again soon.

At Early Connections' In-Service, we welcomed Jennifer Weigold-Geertson, Senior Manager of Community Relations at UPMC Health Plan, for partnering with us to purchase curriculum kits for all of our classrooms at our seven locations throughout Erie County.  UPMC Health Plan partnered with us through the Neighborhood Assistance Program. Pictured:  Jennifer Weigold-Geertson (center of photo in green) and the Early Connections staff.

At Early Connections’ In-Service, we welcomed Jennifer Weigold-Geertson, Senior Manager of Community Relations at UPMC Health Plan, for partnering with us to purchase curriculum kits for all of our classrooms at our seven locations throughout Erie County. UPMC Health Plan partnered with us through the Neighborhood Assistance Program.
Pictured: Jennifer Weigold-Geertson (center of photo in green) and the Early Connections staff.

Mayor w grp of prek kids - duck

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? Preschool children at City Center enjoyed having guest reader Mayor Joe Schember read two of our favorite books this morning,”Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do you see?” by Eric Carle and “Bugs, Bugs, Bugs” by Bob Barner. Thank you, Mayor Schember for visiting with us today. We had a great time and are looking forward to you reading to us again!

Mayor w group of prek kids

 

 

Kiwanis at JEHGA

Early Connections staff and children are thankful to the Kiwanis Club of Erie for donating $1,000 that was used to purchase books for our children and a secure gate Read the rest of this entry »

thankseriegives

Erie BANK supports Preschool Scholarships in Erie County

Our sincere thanks to Erie BANK for their donation to Erie’s Future Fund Preschool Scholarship Program. The Erie’s Future Fund preschool scholarship program, administered by Early Connections, provides Pre-K scholarships for income eligible families in more than 40 preschool programs throughout Erie County.

EFF Check presentation from Erie Bank 7-14-17

Pictured left to right: Bill DeLuca, Senior Vice President at Erie Bank, Darlene Kovacs, Executive Director of Early Connections, and Katie Jones, Assistant Vice President at Erie Bank

Testimonials

Thank You

VINYL PALOOZA 4.0

Early Connections Extends It’s Sincere Appreciation to the Following Sponsors: 

Diamond Sponsors

Kiwanis Club of Erie
The Plazony Family Foundation
Times Publishing Company
The Sunflower Club

Platinum Sponsors

Erie Bank
Presque Isle Downs & Casino

Gold Sponsors

Rep. Flo and Vicki Fabrizio
Rep. Pat and Michelle Harkins
Dr. Paul and Darlene Kovacs
Mike and LeeAnn Thomas

Chartbusters Sponsors

Lori Hetrick
Sean and Kimberly Beers

Thank You! East Erie Moose Lodge #593

Early Connections, Inc. is thankful to the East Erie Moose Lodge #593 for their donation of $500. The Moose Lodge supportMoose Lodge donation 1-2017s family-friendly causes throughout the community.  From left to right:  Michelle Harkins, Associate Executive Director, Early Connections; Craig Westover, East Erie Moose Lodge Governor, and Stephanie King, Director of Early Connections West Side.  Thank you Moose Board and Members!

Thank you! UPMC Health Plan

Early Connections is very thankful to their partners, UPMC Health Plan, for donating $40,000 through the Neighborhood Assistance Program.  This funding will be used to provide high-quality curriculum in each of the Early Connections classrooms throughout Erie County, delivering the best early learning opportunities for children to become better prepared for success in school, and life.UPMC-NAP donation for curriculum check presentation Jan 2018
Pictured (L-R): Darlene Kovacs, Executive Director, Early Connections; Jenny Weigold Geertson, Senior Manager, Regional Community Relations and Marketing Operations, UPMC Health Plan; Michelle Harkins, Associate Executive Director, Early Connections.


 

thanks-1004046_640

Thank you to everyone who donated so generously on Erie Gives Day to help Early Connections improve our playgrounds!


 

Annual Reports

Early Connections Annual Report
2016-2017

Creating Lifelong Learners, One Child at a Time

Early Connections is pleased to present the information in this annual report to the community.  We remain committed to our mission, providing leadership, advocacy, and quality programs in early care and education. We believe this represents the best means to assist young children and their families, giving young learners the enthusiasm and tools to succeed in their future education.

Front cover - Early Connections Annual Report 2016-2017

We work closely with our community partners to continually increase children’s access to quality early learning, and to provide an increasingly-diverse community of learners with multiple opportunities and means to explore new information, skills, and ideas.

In this report, we highlight Early Connections’ work during the 2016-2017 year within our organization and with our many community partners and supporters.  We continue to work for Erie County’s future by inspiring children’s love of learning and by connecting with families to ensure their children’s success.

Previous reports:

2015-2016

Early Connections 2014 Annual Report (part 1)

Early Connections 2014 Annual Report (part 2)