Coordinating Board for Early Childhood


The Coordinating Board for Early Childhood (CBEC) is a collection of Missouri leaders from public and private entities who, under RSMo. 210.102, are responsible for coordinating a unified system of Early Care & Education programs to support the healthy development and school readiness for all Missouri children birth through age five.

CBEC is responsible for developing a comprehensive statewide, long-range strategic plan for a cohesive early childhood system. Missouri’s Early Care & Education (ECE) Strategic Plan is a multi-year strategy to build and sustain a coordinated system to improve supports and services for children from birth through age five. The strategic plan was developed with a focus on safety, health and learning to promote the well-being of young children and their families.

The current plan was developed by over 1,800 Missourians, including Missouri’s child-serving agencies, several Missouri-based organizations, families and professionals from various sectors in the ECE system.


Learn more about Missouri's ECE Strategic Plan



Missouri’s ECE system is coordinated, accessible, adequately resourced and of high quality, designed to promote the well-being of young children and their families.

Guiding Principles for a Comprehensive System

  1. Early childhood is the most intensive developmental period, where both positive and negative factors have the greatest impact on children’s health and well-being.
  2. Policies and practices that are equitable, culturally and linguistically responsive, inclusive and accessible provide the strongest foundation for children’s success in early years and beyond.
  3. Effective programs for young children respond to the totality of a child’s health and developmental needs.
  4. Children with disabilities are best served in natural environments and inclusive programs rather than separate, clinical or disability-focused settings.
  5. Programs and professionals are equipped to build on each child’s unique set of individual and family strengths, and celebrate the range of diversity among those served.
  6. Effective early childhood programs invite and support parents and family members, as fully engaged partners in the design and delivery of services.
  7. The early childhood workforce is diverse and consists of professionals who are valued and compensated for their commitment, time and expertise.
  8. Quality programs, informed by valid and reliable research representing Missouri’s diverse population, are the most effective.
  9. Investments in prevention and early intervention are the most cost-effective use of public funds and offer the greatest return on investment.
  10. The coordination of programs and services at all levels results in administrative efficiencies and are more convenient for families.

The Purpose

To Promote and Improve the Development of Children in Missouri.

The Members

Members of CBEC are gubernatorial appointments with Senate approval. Members serve at pleasure of the Governor. CBEC members include representatives of groups such as business, philanthropy, civic groups, faith-based organizations, parent groups, advocacy organizations, early childhood service providers, and other stakeholders.


Learn more about the Members


Get Involved


Attend  a CBEC Meeting


For more information about the CBEC, please contact:

Department of Social Services
205 Jefferson Street

Phone: (573) 751-6793

Fax: (573) 526-9586