BUILD Georgia

BUILD State Inception Year


BUILD State Leads

Kristin Bernhard, Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning,
Mindy Binderman, Georgia Early Education Alliance for Ready Students (GEEARS),

Early Childhood System

Early Childhood Governance Structure: Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning administers the nationally recognized Georgia’s Pre-K Program, licenses child care centers and home-based child care, administers federal nutrition programs, and manages voluntary quality enhancement programs. Georgia was the first state to create a cabinet-level early childhood department which consolidates much of the funding and programs for early childhood into one department.

BUILD 2015 Areas of Focus

  • Birth-Three Coordination: Assist Georgia’s leaders in mapping and creating an integrated, coordinated system of systems for children birth-three.
  • Family Engagement: Support the work of Georgia’s Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge Grant Family Engagement Task Force. 
  • Child Care Subsidy: Assist Georgia’s child care subsidy leadership in making recommendations to implement and sustain reduced parent co-pays and classroom grant subsidy contracts.

Federal Grants

  • Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge Grant - $51,739,896 (Phase 3)
  • Early Head Start-Child Care Partnership State Grant - No state grant was received. $16,200,000 in annual grants were received by eight community-based organizations in Georgia.
  • Project LAUNCH Grant (2014)
  • MIECHV Grant - $9,310,630 competitive grant and $1,000,000 formula grant (FY 2015)

Local/Regional Collaboratives: Under the Race to the Top – Early Learning Challenge Grant, Georgia has developed four Early Education Empowerment Zones to pilot innovative strategies at the community level to support early childhood systems-building efforts that align with state-level goals.

State Government Leadership

  • Governor Nathan Deal (R)
  • State Legislature: House and Senate (both Republican controlled)