Edison State selected for ODE Regional Education Partnership Grant

PIQUA — The Ohio Department of Education (ODE) has selected Edison State Community College as the backbone organization for the Regional Education Partnership Grant. This two-year, $200,000 grant will enable Edison State to unite multiple community organizations into a cohesive new partnership to support student career pathways from birth to the time they’re ready for the job market.

Edison State has established the West Central Ohio Regional Education Partnership (WCOREP), which will work together with local partners to first focus on Miami County and expand to other counties in the future. As the backbone organization, the College acts as a managing partner, coordinating and leading the partnership’s work. The formation of this partnership is critical so that various organizations can jointly advocate for children in the community. By engaging together, WCOREP will help close achievement gaps and empower students with essential tools to foster their academic and career success.

“Edison State once again breaks new ground for community leadership with the successful award from ODE of $200,000 to pilot a rural-based regional education partnership,” said Edison State President Dr. Doreen Larson.

Early learning organizations, primary and secondary schools, postsecondary education institutions, and workforce development organizations will be active within the WCOREP. Partners in the WCOREP include the Miami County Department of Development, Learn to Earn Dayton, Miami County Educational Services Center, Piqua City Schools, Council on Rural Services, Piqua Compassion Network, and Upper Valley Career Center. By connecting key partners, the partnership will create a shared vision, assess data, and determine how to best address community needs within the region.

To aid and accelerate learning, the WCOREP will focus on areas such as literacy; mathematics for PK-12; career, workforce, military, and postsecondary readiness; and digital literacy. The partnership will do so using the “cradle to career” and StriveTogether theory models. Cradle-to-career networks are comprised of local organizations working together to create more educational and career opportunities for every child, starting at birth. StriveTogether is a data-driven model that works toward eliminating barriers for children.

“The project model follows the working theory of the ‘cradle to career’ community-based achievement structure. As a community, measures of kindergarten readiness, reading on level, math on level, high school completion, and college completion are shared and improvements addressed,” Larson said.

The partnership encompasses Edison State’s core themes of Valuing People, Helping Students Learn, and Understanding Student and Stakeholder Needs and will be reinforced by the College’s strategic plan, which often supports community collaboration and initiatives. The WCOREP’s efforts also align with the Ohio Department of Higher Education (ODHE)’s Attainment Goal 2025, which aims to see 65% of Ohioans ages 25 to 64 holding a degree, certificate, or other postsecondary credential by the year 2025.