Fair Start History
FAIR START is unique to Thunder Bay. In 1996 the Lakehead District School Board invited local community partners and school boards to come together to help ensure that all children starting school had the opportunity to reach their full developmental potential. Joining the Lakehead District School Board was the Thunder Bay Catholic District School Board, Thunder Bay District Health Unit, Communities Together for Children, Children's Centre Thunder Bay (formerly Lakehead Regional Family Centre), and the George Jeffrey Children's Centre.
Over the next three years, FAIR START evolved as a community venture which included volunteers, educators, Thunder Bay Police Association, the City of Thunder Bay, local professionals from many agencies, community centres, and local industries such as Bowater who made financial contributions.
FAIR START has evolved and grown tremendously since those early days. It is now a standard procedure in every licensed child care centre and as a step in registering for Junior Kindergarten. Fair Start screening is also available at a wide variety of community locations such as Best Start Hubs and Public Libraries.
In 2017, FAIR START is celebrating 20 years of developmental screening! See our 20th Anniversary page for more information.
Does Early Identification Make a Difference?
Research shows that over 75% of a child's brain actually develops after his/her birth - most of that in the first five years. These years are critical in shaping a child's ability to think, to love, to trust, and to develop a strong and positive sense of themselves. The first five years have a profound impact on a child's emotional, social and intellectual development.
Early identification means that we can catch potential problems before they have a chance to create larger problems, and, in many cases, we can actually prevent problems from developing.
If you would like more information, please contact us by filling out our online form on the Contact Us page.