Child Development Programs

Helping families work and thrive in Santa Cruz County

Child Development Programs include the Child Development Resource Center (CDRC) and the Childhood Advisory Council. The activities and services of Child Development Programs are designed to ensure that all children have access to quality child care where they are nurtured, safe, healthy and learning to their potential.

7th Annual Together for Kindergarten Forum

Girl with lunch basket

What’s in Your Lunch Box?

What’s in your lunch box? County Superintendent of Schools, Michael Watkins put that question to 200 early educators at the Together for Kindergarten Forum on March 16, 2016. Building relationships between kinder teachers and those who educate children before they start school, the annual forum helps children start school eager and ready to learn.

Now in its seventh year, Together for Kindergarten has taken on a diverse range of topics including early literacy, new legislation, early math, social emotional development, and the importance of family involvement. Each topic is based on brain research that shows that 90 percent (90%) of who we are is determined by the age of five, so early investments into a child’s well-being prevents expensive catching-up later on.

Read more about Together for Kindergarten here.

Related articles:

The Raising of America Film Series Grows Community Awareness and Builds Hope for Young Children

Investing In Our Youngest Learners

Discovery. Exploration. Knowledge.

Inside Education: An Innovative Look at Education in Santa Cruz County Schools

Getting Kindergarten Ready by Getting Educators Together

Santa Cruz County Preschool, Kindergarten Teachers Push Parental Engagement

One Childhood, One Chance—Showing Up for Children


CDRC logo

The Child Development Resource Center operates the Child Care Switchboard which offers families referrals and information about early education and afterschool programs in our community. This information helps families make informed choices based on child and family needs. CDRC provides opportunities for program directors, teachers, aides, and family child care providers to attend research-based workshops on pre-kindergarten skill development in literacy, mathematics, science, child assessment, working with children with special needs, and infant/toddler care giving.

Visit the CDRC web site!


Childhood Advisory Council of Santa Cruz County logo The Childhood Advisory Council is a state funded commission with members appointed by the County Superintendent of Schools and County Board of Supervisors. The Council provides leadership for the assessment, development and sustainability of quality early care and education and school age recreation options in Santa Cruz County. As leaders and experts in early care and education we promote and advocate for quality accessible educational programs that will ensure: children’s healthy development, school success and a stronger healthier community. For information on specific committee topics please visit the Council’s website at

Visit the Childhood Advisory Council web site!