Early Care and Education, Realizing Employment and Creating Hope (ECE REACH)

An early childhood apprenticeship program designed to empower those who have immigrated to the U.S. and are first-generation college students by providing an ECE (Early Care and Education) workforce development pathway to employment.

ECE REACH (Early Care and Education, Realizing Employment and Creating Hope) is a groundbreaking initiative that provides comprehensive support services tailored to meet the unique needs of early childhood apprentices.

Felton Institute is dedicated to addressing the early childhood educator crisis in San Francisco County. The results of the ECE REACH program ensures the development of a pipeline of qualified educators. This also supports our incumbent workforce while addressing the linguistic and cultural needs of the children we serve.


Program Overview

Program Partnerships

ECE REACH falls under the umbrella of Felton’s Workforce Development and Success Initiative, officially launched in 2023 and designed to support a new and incumbent ECE workforce.

The ECE REACH program is a collaborative effort between Felton Institute, MEDA (Mission Economic Development Agency), Foothill College, and EDvance College.

Who We Serve

Participant Demographics

  • New and incumbent ECE workforce
  • Youth (in high school and/or 18-24 years old) and parents (24 and above)
  • Low-Income
  • Immigrant
  • Latina or BIPOC
  • Monolingual Spanish, limited English
  • Housing Insecure
  • Unemployed or underemployed
  • Living in the San Francisco Mission, Excelsior, Bayview, and Visitation Valley neighborhoods

Our Services

  • Academic Support Services through Foothill College and EDvance College
  • Job Readiness Training (JRT) classes
  • Work Experience Placements
  • Leadership Development Opportunities, externships, community services, job readiness workshops, and peer-centered activities
  • Mentoring with Lead Teachers as role models
  • Follow-up Services following program completion, including intensive support, one-to-one vocational/career guidance, and sector job placement
  • Financial Capability and Housing Navigation services through MEDA's (Mission Economic Development Agency) Housing Opportunities Program

ECE REACH Apprenticeship Model

  • Two-Generation Approach
  • Financial Literacy & Wealth Building
  • Enhanced Supports and Incentives
  • Asset-Based, Competency-Based and Practice-Based
  • Accessible, Diverse, and Inclusive
  • Cohort Learning Community

Select the Level that Suits You Best!

Participants of all ECE REACH Levels earn:

  • $1000 educational stipend per semester
  • CPR/First Aid Training certificate
  • Mandated Child Abuse & Neglect Training certificate
  • Academic tutoring and support

ECE REACH Tier 1: The Teacher’s Assistant Apprenticeship

  • Earn 18 ECE college credits in three semesters

ECE REACH Tier 2: Teacher Apprenticeship (AA degree)

  • Earn 60 college credits an Associate of Arts (AA) degree, including 24 ECE units and 3 supervised field experience units.

ECE REACH Tier 3: The Lead Teacher Apprenticeship (BA Degree)

  • Earn 60 additional college credits (120 total) and a Bachelor of Arts (BA) degree, including 24 ECE units, 6 units in administration + 2 units in adult supervision.

Program Benefits for Participants

Through a collective impact approach, ECE REACH offers accelerated ECE degree attainment and career pathways, tackling historical barriers to employment and career advancement.

After ECE REACH program completion and graduation, the academic, work-based learning, professional, and career development leads to:

  1. Entry points into birth-to-eight professional roles and career advancement in the Early Care and Education field.
  2. Foundational core knowledge and competencies in child development.
  3. Core knowledge and competencies for early care and education professionals.
  4. Access to career opportunities with a starting rate of $28 per hour for an entry-level position in an ECE setting or a higher rate depending on the role.

Apply For Our Next Cohort

Are you a first-generation college student or immigrant interested in pursuing a career in early childhood education? Apply now to start your journey towards a rewarding career!

After your application is received, an ECE REACH program staff member will contact you about the next steps.

We encourage applicants to prepare by collecting the following information/documents:

  • Immunization record, including COVID-19 Vaccination
  • Health Screenings
  • Unofficial transcript(s) for any college coursework (as applicable)
  • Driver’s License, Passport, Identification

Success During Pilot Year (2023)

  • 34 Participants Enrolled & Completed the Pre-Apprenticeship
  • 80% retention rate
  • 100% earned 18 child development college units
  • 100% earned Associate Teacher Credentials


Service Area: The City and County of San Francisco, with a focus on the Mission, Excelsior, Bayview and Visitation Valley neighborhoods.

Early Care and Education, Realizing Employment and Creating Hope (ECE REACH)
Address: 2730 Bryant Street, 1st Floor, San Francisco, CA 94110
Program Email: ecereach@felton.org
Main Office Phone: (415) 282-1090 ext. 509
Fax: (415) 282-1735

For more information, please contact:

Gigi Munoz, Workforce Development and Success Director
Office Phone: (415) 282-1090 ext. 516
Email: ecereach@felton.org

Yohana I. Quiróz, Ed.D., Felton Institute Chief Operations Officer (COO),
Division Director, Children, Youth, Family and Transitional Age Youth Services (CYFTAY)
Email: yquiroz@felton.org

Felton Institute’s ECE REACH (Early Care and Education, Realizing Employment And Creating Hope) program is operated in collaboration with MEDA (Mission Economic Development Agency), Foothill College, and EDvance College.

ECE REACH is funded by the San Francisco Department of Early Childhood (SFDEC).

We are grateful to the California Workforce Development Board’s (CWDB) Workforce Accelerator Fund (WAF) and Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (WIOA) for their support and an 18-month grant to launch the inaugural ECE REACH apprenticeship program.