Jefferson Parish Pulse: Jefferson Ready Start Network

This week on the Season 6 premier of the Jefferson Parish Pulse powered by JEDCO, we interview Dr. Sarintha Stricklin, the Executive Director of Jefferson Ready Start Network. Driven by the community’s need to improve opportunities and inspire change for children from birth to age five, this coalition of individuals is committed to creating and implementing a bold local vision for early childhood education and care. Dr. Stricklin has made it her mission to raise awareness about the need for more early childhood opportunities and to secure funding to bring early childhood care to all children in our Parish.

On this episode of the podcast, Dr. Stricklin dives deep into the coalition’s mission and the data that is driving its activities, some of the latest initiatives designed to serve our community’s children, and how early childhood care and education directly impact economic development.


Learn more about Jefferson Ready Start Network at

To learn about the programs available in the Ready Start Network, visit


With 30 years of early childhood experience, 15 years of faculty teaching experience and 20 years of management experience, Sarintha Stricklin, Ph.D., has leveraged her position as Executive Director at Innovations in Education, Jefferson Ready Start Network (JRSN) and Jefferson Early Childhood Collaborative to highlight the importance of access to high-quality early care and education across Louisiana. She has worked for years to serve the 28,000 children birth to age 5 in Jefferson Parish. Of these infants and toddlers, 21-25,000 are economically disadvantaged and more than 4,000 are served by publicly funded child care seats.

As executive director of JRSN, Dr. Stricklin oversees strategic fundraising initiatives and is responsible for managing early care and education grants to see the organization’s vision to fruition: that all children birth to age 5—regardless of economic background—have access to quality early childhood experiences that prepare them to succeed. Dr. Stricklin also serves as executive director of the Jefferson Early Childhood Collaborative where she oversees a portfolio of over $10 million in grants and projects and works to enhance the quality of publicly funded programs in Jefferson Parish. Her work with JRSN and the Collaborative provides an opportunity for coalition-building between individuals and organizations committed to creating and implementing a bold, local vision for early childhood.

In addition to her role as Executive Director, Dr. Stricklin serves on the Board of Directors for the Metropolitan Human Services District (MSHD), serving members of our community with mental health disorders, addiction and intellectual/developmental disabilities. In the past year, the MSHD has been vital in ensuring that these vulnerable populations receive PPE, vaccines and other necessary care during the COVID-19 pandemic. Since 2006, Dr. Stricklin has also been a founding member on the Plaquemines Parish Community CARE Centers’ Board of Directors.

Throughout her career, Dr. Stricklin has been an incredibly active and involved member of our community, dedicated to providing education and resources to families with young children, especially those with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Dr. Stricklin has served on the Board of Directors for Families Helping Families Southeast Louisiana, on the Board of Directors for Families Helping Families of Louisiana, on the Research Committee for the International Division for Early Childhood Council for Exceptional Children, as a member of the Comprehensive System of Personnel Development for Louisiana State Interagency Coordinating Council and as the National Membership Chair on the Board of Directors for the International Division for the Early Childhood Council for Exceptional Children.

Feel free to listen to the full interview below.  You can also hear us anywhere you listen to your podcasts, including Apple PodcastsSpotify and Stitcher. We would LOVE your feedback. Please send your thoughts, questions and show requests to Kelsey Scram at