About Us

Great Start is Michigan’s nationally recognized state-wide initiative supporting school readiness and life success for young children.

The Dickinson Iron Great Start Collaborative is beginning its 12th year as 1 of Michigan’s 54 Great Start Collaboratives!  In March 2006, the Dickinson-Iron Great Start Collaborative was one of the first 14 collaboratives to be funded in Michigan.

To engage the entire community to assure a coordinated system of services, supports and resources to assist all Dickinson and Iron County families in providing a ‘great start’ in school for children from birth through age 8.

Great Start leaders set annual goals that are challenging, realistic and most of all help families access high quality early childhood programs and resources.  The Great Start team consists of many dedicated and compassionate leaders who care about making a difference in the lives of children and families.  Through working together, the collaborative leaders continue to system build and collaborate to recognize needs and solutions to help young children and families.

To be successful in school and in life, children must grow up in an environment that develops self confidence, positive social and emotional skills and a love for learning.  The Great Start Collaborative serves families and involves the entire community in a partnership designed to benefit young children and  families.

COMMUNITY PARTNERSHIPS are the key to insuring the mission and vision for our children!  We are all in this together and we believe in the importance of early learning opportunities for young children!  The Great Start Collaborative is made up of parents, child care providers, community volunteers, business leaders and other leaders from a wide variety of local organizations, health education and human service agencies.

The Michigan Department of Education’s Office of Great Start provides leadership, oversight, funding and support to Great Start Collaboratives. Funding for Great Start comes from a combination of public and private dollars.  Michigan’s Intermediate School Districts serve as the primary fiduciary for most of Michigan’s Great Start Collaboratives.

Parent leaders have a huge voice in all Great Start Collaboratives.  What sets the Great Start Collaboratives apart from other national early childhood movements is the special focus Great Start puts on promoting and engaging parents as leaders!

(See the Parent Leader pull down section for more information on the Dickinson Iron Great Start parent leaders)


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