Chattanooga 2.0’s theory of action is a chain of reasoning that explains how our combined actions will lead to lasting change in Chattanooga-Hamilton County. The work of Chattanooga 2.0 is about impact — permanently changing the odds for children, students, and families in our community. This is how we get there.

2021-2030 Strategies

The new Chattanooga 2.0 strategic plan identifies eight strategies as key levers for change along the cradle-to-career continuum that we will work with partners to implement over the next 10 years. Every strategy is supported by evidence-based Actions, and each Action has key performance indicators designed to gauge how well they are working. Strategies were built from factors that were determined to have a high impact on the cradle-to-career continuum and that we have a strong ability to impact through our collaborative efforts.

Chattanooga 2.0’s work is built around a Whole Child approach, acknowledging that developing and preparing students for life and career requires a focus on ensuring that every child, in every school, is healthy, engaged, supported, and challenged. It engages all stakeholders — parents, community members, policymakers — around the shared responsibility of enabling student success.


All children and youth have access to and take advantage of quality services to create a healthy foundation from which to achieve success in school and life.

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Because one of the most important investments we can make in cradle-to-career education is in early childhood, we will work with partners, providers, and community members to build an aligned, coordinated, and stable early childhood system. We will ensure that working families have access to affordable, high-quality care and that the children who need early learning supports the most are prioritized in efforts to expand access to these critical services.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Supporting collaboration and alignment across child and family-serving sectors
  • Continual mapping and assessment of the needs of the early childhood system
  • Advocating for high-quality, community and data-informed, coordinated early childhood systems and services


Access to Early Childhood Services
Quality of Early Learning Services


All children and youth have access to personalized learning and are supported by qualified, caring, culturally-competent adults in an environment that is physically and emotionally safe.

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Student success is supported by environments that promote positive relationships, high expectations, and are intentional about addressing implicit bias and other structural barriers to educational attainment. The Chattanooga 2.0 coalition will work to ensure learning environments across the cradle-to-career continuum enable the success and recognize the potential of every student with an intentional focus on addressing historical inequities.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Establishing an Equity Council whose charge is to craft, implement, and track recommendations to foster greater equity in cradle-to-career education and workforce development

  • Launching a community-wide initiative to train educators and stakeholders across the cradle-to-career continuum on racial equity, implicit bias, and cultural competence

  • Developing a public-private partnership to address Hamilton County Schools’ facilities challenges, ensuring every student has a learning environment they can be proud of


Cultural Competence
Advising and Coaching Supports

Supports that help students navigate the postsecondary environment contribute to an increased likelihood of postsecondary completion.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Scaling and sustaining the College Access Mentor program to provide students who face barriers to postsecondary success with case management to support needs both in and out of school

  • Expanding summer bridge programs that provide academic, social, and college readiness supports

  • Launching and expanding financial assistance programs on college campuses to address critical funding needs caused by poverty and emergency circumstances


Peer Connections in Postsecondary
Postsecondary Enrollment and Completion Supports
Advising and Coaching Supports
Postsecondary Transition


All children and youth are challenged academically and prepared for their next step after high school.

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Across the cradle-to-career continuum, we will work to ensure that all children and students have equitable access to rigorous coursework, experiences, and supports that adequately prepare them for postsecondary, career, and life.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Expanding the number of high-quality early learning programs

  • Increasing participation in high-quality out-of-school-time programs, especially among low-income students and students of color

  • Expanding ACT prep across the county, ensuring access and tailored supports for economically disadvantaged students and students of color

  • Guaranteeing five fully-funded early postsecondary opportunities to Hamilton County Schools high school students


Early Literacy and Numeracy
Rigorous Coursework
Early Postsecondary Opportunities

We’ve made great strides toward developing a strong pipeline of, and retaining, great teachers and leaders. We will sharpen our focus to ensure Chattanooga-Hamilton County’s teaching workforce and all stakeholders directly supporting children and students are representative of our broader community and those we serve. We’ll also work to ensure that teachers are trained, supported, and equipped to respond to the unique needs and challenges of 21st century learners, and that students who need the most support have access to our most effective educators.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Supporting and expanding “Grow Your Own” efforts to provide teacher licensure to classified K-12 staff

  • Developing and supporting non-financial incentives for Hamilton County’s most effective teachers to teach in high need schools

  • Supporting and expanding programs like “Project Inspire” that graduates annual classes with twice the diversity of the current Hamilton County Schools’ teaching force

  • Developing mentoring programs and other initiatives that help recruit and retain racially diverse educators

  • Supporting child care providers in recruiting teachers that are high-quality and culturally representative


Teacher Quality


Children and youth benefit from the seamless alignment of the systems designed to support their success.

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Employers play a key role in providing access to relevant training opportunities, internships, and shaping curriculum. As end consumers of the talent pipeline, businesses are also powerful advocates for increased support for high-quality education systems. We will work to engage the private sector to expand equitable access to jobs, experiences, and services.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Expanding work-based learning programs, internships, and youth apprenticeships in partnership with employers

  • Establishing a business-education coalition who will advocate for increased education supports in the community and reduce barriers to high-quality careers for Hamilton County Schools graduates

  • Permanently closing the digital divide in Chattanooga-Hamilton County, ensuring every student has a device and access to broadband internet


Access to Wraparound Supports
Business Engagement
College and Career Exposure

Achieving our goals from cradle to career requires an all-hands-on-deck approach. When the social-emotional, mental, and physical needs of children are met, they are empowered to pursue and achieve their goals in school, work, and life. Chattanooga 2.0 will work closely with nonprofits, public agencies, and faith-based organizations in order to align the whole community to the whole-child needs of children across Chattanooga-Hamilton County.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Establishing a community school presence at every high-need school in Hamilton County to provide wraparound supports

  • Expanding the Individual Student Success Planning pilot to all Hamilton County Schools, elevating student strengths and needs in academic, health, social, and family domains

  • Increasing the alignment and effectiveness of child and family-serving systems through the Hamilton County Children’s Cabinet


Access to Wraparound Supports
Family and Community Engagement


Students and their families are actively engaged in learning and connected to their educational institutions and the broader community.

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Those most impacted by community challenges should have a say in designing and implementing solutions. Inclusion of intended beneficiaries and their families, neighbors, and trusted leaders lends context and lived experience to our work, enabling us to achieve better results. When we empower families and communities with data, they are better equipped to advocate on behalf of their children.

This includes High-Impact Actions such as:

  • Establishing a Community Council to serve as a hub of authentic community voice and action

  • Publishing an annual report to the community including an equity scorecard

  • Creating a public dashboard of Chattanooga 2.0 indicators, disaggregating data and tracking disparities


Family and Community Engagement


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