Programs - SC First Steps


First Steps takes a holistic approach to accomplishing its mission of ensuring that all children start school ready to reach their highest potential. We offer services that improve children’s health, strengthen families, expand access to quality early care and education, increase participation in four-year-old kindergarten programs, and help transition rising kindergartners into school.

Early Care & Education

Child Care

Providing local families with access to high-quality early care and education.

Early Care & Education

Child Care Scholarships

Eligible children receive tuition-free enrollment at quality child care centers

School Transition

Countdown to Kindergarten

Countdown to Kindergarten supports transitions into kindergarten by connecting incoming students, their families, and their teachers in a series of one-on-one sessions during the summer.


Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library

One book per month mailed to the home

Early Care & Education

Early Head Start

Nationally, Early Head Start programs serve over 160,000 children and pregnant women annually.


Early Identification & Referral

Providing developmental screenings and referrals to other services, independent of another partnership program


Early Steps to School Success

Home visitation for families pre-birth until 36 months

Early Care & Education

Enhanced Early Education

The Enhanced Early Education strategy seeks to enhance education services offered by early childhood classrooms.