About First Steps

South Carolina was the third state in the nation to create a statewide public-private partnership to increase school readiness outcomes for children. South Carolina First Steps to School Readiness was created by law in 1999, as leaders recognized an alarming gap in students’ preparedness for school success.

Since inception, First Steps has helped young children in all 46 counties by offering school readiness services to families designed to:

– Improve children’s health and well-being (pre-natal to age 5);

– Support parents in their goal to serve as their children’s first and best teachers;

– Provide parents with easy access to needed early interventions for children with unique development needs;

– Help parents access quality child care for their young children;

– Promote early education programs and quality pre-kindergarten choices for families;

– Help parents transition their rising kindergarteners into school.

Each county in South Carolina is served by a First Steps Partnership responsible for meeting local needs and identifying collaborative opportunities to help our state’s youngest learners. State level board and staff support statewide priorities, programs, and assist local partnerships in meeting the needs of families statewide.


For more information on the offerings of First Steps in your community, click here.