Our Core Values

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From Theory to Practice

Core values are only meaningful when they’re lived out each and every day.

From our inspiring Corps members to our dedicated staff and our impressive leadership team, we believe in honoring our core values by working in service of children. We recognize we’re stronger and more effective in preparing America’s children when we do it together, so we hold each other mutually accountable for living out these core values at the individual and organizational levels.



Focus on progress and continuous improvement. Build knowledge, strengthen skill sets, and learn from a diverse set of perspectives.

  • Service: We engage children with the intention of creating rich and meaningful learning opportunities for them.
  • Individual: We practice self-reflection and encourage honest feedback to maximize individual and team potential.
  • Organizational: We strive to be better at everything we do in order to provide optimal results, and better serve our constituents.



Pursue goals with drive and focus. Face obstacles with courage and conviction, and strive to create long-term impact.

  • Service: We build confidence and spark natural motivation in children to encourage resiliency and help set them on a successful path.
  • Individual: We identify creative solutions to challenges and take pride in our resourcefulness.
  • Organizational: We persevere relentlessly and work together to achieve our mission.



Forge internal and external partnerships thoughtfully. Build strong relationships that create more substantial results than any individual effort.

  • Service: We bring volunteers, schools, families and communities together to provide children with the right support early on.
  • Individual: We communicate across all levels and functions to encourage collaboration and increase the effectiveness of our work.
  • Organizational: We create and steward meaningful partnerships with stakeholders to deliver high-quality services.



Create a culture of fun, excitement, and hope. Celebrate success in genuine ways, and champion a compelling vision for the future.

  • Service: We promote the cultivation of a playful spirit to help children build a love for language and literacy.
  • Individual: We find opportunities to laugh with one another and appreciate our unique styles and contributions within our teams.
  • Organizational: We embrace our passion to make a difference in children’s lives and involve others in advancing the early education field.



Interact with respect, understanding and care. Consider differing viewpoints while recognizing common goals, feelings and needs.

  • Service: We develop patience within ourselves and in children to help them understand how all people want to be treated.
  • Individual: We support each other through positive approaches and reach out to help when we see struggle and need.
  • Organizational: We lift each other through our actions every day and are united in our belief that all children deserve the best of what we can give.

Photo Credit: Beth Bauer Photography