Children’s experiences during the early years set the foundation for their future learning and development. In fact, more than one million neural connections are formed each second during the first years of a child’s life, making access to high-quality services and resources even more important during this critical window. The various programs, policies, and agencies that help meet young children’s early learning, health, and economic needs constitute an early childhood system.
Well-designed early childhood systems are comprehensive, interconnected, and interdependent, enabling children to reach their full potential and ensuring stability and continuity of services from the prenatal stage through school-age. A systems approach attempts to connect various sectors and child-serving initiaives, despite the often siloed nature of such programs.
This systems map was designed to depict Georgia’s early childhood system, one that spans early learning, child health, economic wellbeing, and family supports. While comprehensive, this map is not exhaustive and primarily focuses on publicly funded programs and services for children and families.