Thrive by 5

The Children’s Trust Thrive by 5 initiative is an integrated system of supports for children and families, teachers and provider agencies. Thrive by 5 is grounded in equity principles to drive access to high-quality early learning programs that promote healthy development for children living in high poverty areas. 

Thrive by 5 Early Learning Quality Improvement System (QIS)

High-quality early learning, frequently experienced in a child care setting, prepares children for both school and a lifetime of success. The Children’s Trust Thrive by 5 Early Learning Quality Improvement System has invested in an innovative array of strategies to prepare children for kindergarten through the development of physical and cognitive skills, as well as, social and emotional health and behavior. The QIS strategies work together to support child care owners, educators, children and their families. 

Other components of Thrive by 5 include:

Families Forward 

Awarded to parents who do not qualify for a School Readiness subsidy but still cannot afford the high cost of quality child care. While School Readiness eligibility covers families with incomes up to 150 percent of the federal poverty level, Thrive By 5 Families Forward Child Care Scholarships cover families with incomes up to 300 percent of the federal poverty level. Parents can use the scholarships to enroll children in high-quality programs, based on CLASS assessments, and those programs would benefit from increasing enrollment.

To fulfill eligibility requirements, an application for school readiness must be submitted prior.
Click here to initiate the application process.

 Thrive by 5 Families Forward Child Care Scholarships Guide (pdf)


Ascend is a salary supplement award program designed to increase retention, educator practice and compensation. The Ascend program rewards early childhood educators by collectively recognizing education, ongoing professional development, teacher-child interactions and longevity as demonstrated pathways of competency in their roles.

Ascend supplements are available to early learning educators employed at Thrive by 5 programs in Miami-Dade County.  


Jump Start 
Jump Start logo^

The Jump Start program offers infant and early childhood mental health consultation to build the capacity of child care providers to support children’s social-emotional development and manage challenging behaviors to decrease preschool expulsion and teachers’ job-related stress. The Jump Start program is housed at the University of Miami Mailman Center for Child Development in the Miller School of Medicine. 

Early Learning Career Center 

The Early Learning Career Center is funded by The Children’s Trust as part of Miami-Dade County’s quality improvement system. The Career Center serves as a valuable resource for early learning educators; connecting them to professional development services and resources, educational scholarships, wage stipends, and a training registry known as the Professional Development Registry (PDR). The Career Center is committed to providing these services because we know that early childhood educators hold the keys to quality learning experiences for young children. Learn more by downloading the Thrive by 5 Professional Development Supports Guide.

Connecting Assessments with Intentional Teaching - CAIT 

The CAIT program provides free assessment training and implementation support to early childhood educators and administrators throughout Miami-Dade.

The United Way Center for Excellence in Early Education manages, coordinates and provides Teaching Strategies GOLD® assessment training to use results to improve student outcomes and progress.

Does my program qualify?

CAIT works with center-based programs and family child care homes in low-income census tracts serving 30 percent or more children who receive school readiness subsidies.