Elkhart County names director of new childhood coalition
The Community Foundation of Elkhart County has named Kim Boynton to lead a new coalition designed to ensure kindergartners in the county are prepared to start elementary school. Boynton is the inaugural director for Building Strong Brains, Elkhart County’s Early Childhood Coalition.
A consortium, led by the Community Foundation, began conversations and research several years ago to improve the readiness of pre-elementary age students in the county. Members say the need was great as only 42% of children demonstrate all the skills needed to enter first grade.
The coalition officially launched in November 2022 and is focused on changing outcomes over the next decade or more.
“Given her expertise, experience, and tenure in Elkhart County, Kim is well-poised to assure the success of the coalition and therefore students in Elkhart County,” said Candy Yoder, chief program officer for the Community Foundation.
Boynton is a speech-language pathologist and assistant professor of speech-language pathology at Saint Mary’s College in South Bend, who previously worked for Elkhart Community Schools.
“Families and children are at the heart of the Elkhart County community and we have the opportunity to work with them to support their access to resources and opportunities, working together to positively impact lives,” said Boynton. “The work is challenging, rewarding, and complex, but the importance is evident in research and practice.”
She will begin the new role on June 1 and be employed by the Community Foundation of Elkhart County.
Other members of the coalition include Horizon Education Alliance; The Source, hosted by Oaklawn; CAPS – Child and Parent Services; and Crossroads United Way.