Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘National’ Category

pexels-mentatdgt-1569076

Photo: mentatdgt from Pexels

 
Massachusetts child care providers – get ready to apply for a federal COVID-19 relief fund grant!

The funds are coming soon, and they will help providers emerge from the pandemic and rebuild.

Based on feedback from the field, the Department of Early Education and Care (EEC) is committed to creating an “accessible application process.”
 

Screen Shot 2021-07-19 at 7.13.39 PM

Strategies for Children

 
There are a number of ways that you can learn more about these grants before the application is released. (more…)

Read Full Post »

“Child care is a workforce issue, and prioritizing investment in the following ways will help to overcome this barrier:

• Investments in the child care workforce. In the short term, states can offer incentives such as signing bonuses for child care workers to return to work, and retention bonuses for established early childhood educators. In the long term, continued education grants and apprenticeship programs to support early childhood educators can meet the incredible demand for quality child care.

• Supporting working parents. States can and should invest in their data infrastructure. By creating databases that monitor the type and supply of child care available to communities, families and child care providers both benefit.

• Investing in the business side of child care. Stabilizing and growing the child care industry is a must. Grant and loan programs to stabilize existing child care programs and launch new, quality options will prevent child care deserts from growing, promote innovation from providers, and increase options for families.

“Many states are already leading by example.

“Arizona channeled $300 million in federal resources into return-to-work incentive programs that include $2,000 bonuses for those who return to the workforce, three months of child care assistance for people with children who return to work after collecting unemployment benefits, and housing assistance.”
 

“States taking the boldest actions on child care should be national models,” by Cheryl Oldham, Opinion Contributor, The Hill, July 15, 2021

Read Full Post »

pexels-eren-li-7168995

Photo: Eren Li from Pexels

 

In a new article, David Jacobson praises federal investments in early education and care. But, he writes, one “critically important” issue that receives less attention is partnerships.

Specifically, he asks, “how can elementary schools, early childhood programs, and health and social service agencies work together to improve quality and coordination across entire neighborhoods and communities and thus create the most positive overall environments possible for children and families?”

The article — “A game-changing opportunity: Rethinking how communities serve children and families” – appears on the website of Yale Medical School’s Partnership for Early Education Research (PEER).

Jacobson has been a longtime advocate of partnerships. He is the Principal Technical Advisor, Education Development Center, Inc., (EDC). And he also leads “EDC’s First 10 initiative, which supports school-early childhood-community partnerships to improve outcomes for children ages birth through 10 and their families.”

As he writes in the article: (more…)

Read Full Post »

Screen Shot 2021-07-13 at 10.51.21 AM

Screenshot: Child Care Aware

 
How can the federal government’s $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan (ARP) help rebuild child care? Child Care Aware has listed answers on a comprehensive webpage with infographics and other tools.

“As an advocate, it is important that your voice is heard on how states use the funds from the ARP Act,” Child Care Aware says. “You know what policies implemented during the pandemic helped stabilize child care and what policies can help build a better system moving forward. It is important to ensure that funds are administered in an equitable, efficient and transparent manner.”

The goal for advocates: encourage states to use the federal relief funds in wise, strategic ways.

“Advocates will need to bring a list of policy suggestions for the state to consider supporting. One way to highlight the need for specific policies is through sharing stories collected from child care providers and families. They can use their own words to talk about the hardships they faced during the pandemic and which temporary policies helped them the most.” (more…)

Read Full Post »

pexels-rodnae-productions-8363037

Photo: RODNAE Productions from Pexels

Tune in today: PBS NewsHour is launching a five-part series called “Raising the Future: America’s Child Care Dilemma.”

“The struggle to find affordable, quality child care has always been one of the biggest issues for American families and Covid-19 only exacerbated the problem,” a press release says.

“This series examines the current state of the American child care system, its history, and the new movement for long-term reform in the post-Covid era.”

The series will look at the “fractured child care system and its impact on women, children, people of color and the economy.”

Here in Boston, the show airs at 6 p.m. on WGBH. Search here to find out when the show airs in your city, or watch the episodes online.

Here’s a rundown of the episodes that will all run this week:

(more…)

Read Full Post »

“School districts across the United States are hiring additional teachers in anticipation of what will be one of the largest kindergarten classes ever as enrollment rebounds following the coronavirus pandemic.

“As they await the arrival next fall of students who sat out the current school year, educators are also bracing for many students to be less prepared than usual due to lower preschool attendance rates.

“ ‘The job of the kindergarten teacher just got a lot harder,’ said Steven Barnett, senior co-director of the National Institute for Early Education Research at Rutgers University. He coauthored a report that found that the number of 4-year-olds participating in preschool fell from 71 percent before the pandemic to 54% during the pandemic, with poor children much less likely to attend in-person.”

“Schools across U.S. brace for post-pandemic surge of kindergartners in fall,” the Associated Press, June 13, 2021

Read Full Post »


 
“There’s nothing like a national crisis to get the country thinking about child care. An obvious and recent example is the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”

That’s the opening of Season 2, Episode 1 of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston’s “600 Atlantic” podcast (named after the bank’s address).

The first season covered the country’s geographic disparities, the “widening gaps in economic and social well-being between regions.”

“Season 2: A Private Crisis” looks at the fact that, “The nation’s child care system is broken. Parents strain to afford it, low-paid workers struggle to stay in it, and high-quality care is hard to find. This puts perpetual stress on families and the economy. Still, major reform has been elusive.”

One glimmer of hope: The pandemic has forced the country to appreciate child care’s importance. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Melissa Charles picture

Melissa Charles

Melissa Charles

I am a student at Bunker Hill Community College pursuing my associate degree. However, this fall I will transfer to Smith College and study economics.

I was born in Geneva Switzerland and left the country at age three. By the time I started kindergarten in the United States, French and Haitian Creole were my first languages. As a child. I was not celebrated for my multilingual abilities. In fact, compared to my peers, I was seen as having a deficit. Fortunately, I learned English quickly, and within a few months, I had completely adapted.

During my internship at Strategies for Children (SFC), I have been carrying my early childhood experience with me. I am interested in early education and care that includes a focus on emerging multi-language learners and on families who rely heavily on assistance programs and would benefit from supportive, grassroots policies.

In my policy and advocacy work, I hope to grow SFC’s social media presence through outreach and campaigns, drawing on my experience as a marketing intern for my hometown of Stoneham, Mass. Through my work with the SFC team, I hope to advance budget and policy ideas that may have not been prioritized in the past. (more…)

Read Full Post »

Screen Shot 2021-06-30 at 11.40.49 AM

KIDS COUNT Screenshot

 

The new 2021 KIDS COUNT Data Book is out.

Released by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, this 32nd edition describes “how children across the United States were faring before — and during — the coronavirus pandemic.”

“This year’s publication continues to deliver the Foundation’s annual state rankings and the latest available data on child well-being. It identifies multiyear trends — comparing statistics from 2010 to 2019.” The KIDS COUNT data center provides more details.

This year’s good news: Massachusetts ranks an impressive #1 among all 50 states in overall child well-being.

The caveat: Massachusetts and all the other states still have to do substantial work to create equitable systems that serve all children and families and that provide access to high quality early education and care to everyone.

“The rankings in this edition of the Data Book, which are based on 2019 data, show that despite gains since the Great Recession, the nation was not ensuring every child had the opportunity to thrive.” (more…)

Read Full Post »

“California will expand the state’s Transitional Kindergarten (TK) program to all four-year-olds if a current placeholder budget is enacted on July 1st. If approved, the state would phase in the program incrementally over three years starting in the 2022-23 school year.

“TK was started in 2010 as a new grade level in California’s public schools for four-year-olds with fall birthdays. California had one of the youngest kindergarten entry dates in the nation at the time, which meant children started kindergarten as young as age four. The new grade level was meant to rectify that problem, but it also created new inequities because it was only available to a small number of children.

“Now it looks like that’s about to change.”

“California Moves Toward Universal Pre-K,” by Sarah Jackson, New America blog post, June 21, 2021

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: