Need for a Child Care Sector Bailout: Elizabeth Warren and Others

Boston Globe

“One thing is clear: We can no longer afford to approach child care as an economic accessory. We must approach it as the oxygen on which every facet of our recovery will depend.”

See this opinion piece from the Boston Globe by Elizabeth Warren, Bruce Mann, Joseph Kennedy III, Lauren Birchfield Kennedy, Katherine Clark, Ayanna Pressley, and Conan Harris. While Massachusetts is referenced, the take-aways are national in scope.

https://go.edc.org/ffla

A message from EDC about COVID-19

EDC Covid 19 2020-03-25 100833

With the hope that some of these resources may be useful to you in these challenging times, I’m sharing this email from Dave Offensend, EDC’s President, about a website my colleagues have created.

Dear Friends,

The crisis that faces our global community today is unparalleled in the way it is affecting everyone around the world—individuals, communities, and nations alike. Like all of you, we at EDC are watching the rapidly changing developments related to the spread of COVID-19 with concern. However, we’re also thinking about what we can do to help. With 61 years of working with teachers, parents, and health care professionals, EDC is offering some practical assistance.

Many of you are searching for answers to difficult questions, such as “How can I help my child continue to learn while school is out?” or “How can I take care of my own mental health right now?” or even “How do I teach online if I haven’t done so before?”

Our webpage Resources for the COVID-19 Crisis contains links to many EDC health and education resources for parents, teachers, and others who may be searching for answers to these and other questions. They include information such as helping children and adults cope with anxiety, staying connected for work and learning in a virtual world, and activities to keep children engaged at home. The page will be continually updated with new information and resources, so please revisit often.

As we move forward in these uncertain times, we at EDC hope that all of you remain safe and well.

Best,

 

 

David Offensend

President and CEO

 

New Education Week Commentary: Getting the First 10 Years Right

Annotation 2020-02-12 115821

Here is my new Education Week Commentary on bridging the gaps between early childhood, elementary school, and health and human services. Please join me in getting the word out and supporting these important collaborations. In addition to the leading edge communities I mention in the essay, 13 communities in Maine and 4 communities in Pennsylvania are implementing First 10 initiatives, and 7 more communities in Pennsylvania are beginning the planning process.

https://go.edc.org/74ug

Improving the Transition to Kindergarten in Rhode Island (and a great Transitions resource)

Image_1 2019-01-04_17-44-28-resized

My colleagues and I at EDC have been busy supporting First 10 work, including in Maine (13 communities and an inter-agency state First 10 team), Rhode Island, Lancaster County, PA, and Worcester, MA. First 10 in Pennsylvania is now expanding to include the 7-county South Central region of the state. I’ll be posting lessons learned from these initiatives in 2020. In the meantime I want to provide some context about a Statewide Transition to Kindergarten initiative in Rhode Island and share a key document we’ve been using to anchor this work.

The Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) is making a major commitment to improving the Transition to Kindergarten statewide. The Transition to Kindergarten is an important component of the First 10 continuum and of First 10 school hubs and community partnerships. At its heart First 10 is about bringing early childhood programs, K-12 education, and health and social services together to improve outcomes for young children and their families. Transition to Kindergarten initiatives focus on the bridge between early childhood and K-12 (ages 3-5), knitting systems together in support of ready children, families, schools, and communities. The transition to Kindergarten serves as a natural place to begin First 10 initiatives, and in fact all the First 10 plans we help communities develop include transition and alignment strategies.

We have worked with RIDE to support Rhode Island’s statewide Transition to Kindergarten initiative for the past 15 months. This initiative includes:

  • Providing an ongoing series of professional learning summits and onsite coaching for two cohorts of three communities each: (1) Newport, West Warwick, and Woonsocket, and (2) Coventry, East Providence, and North Providence. Community transition teams participate in these activities as they develop and implement Transition to Kindergarten plans.
  • Documenting these communities’ efforts in a lessons learned and case study publication.
  • Holding two statewide summits to engage and inform other communities around the state.
  • Developing a Transition to Kindergarten Toolkit to be shared with all communities.
  • Conducting a survey of kindergarten teachers’ use of data to inform teaching and learning at the beginning of the school year.

Communities have found these supports to be very helpful, and Rhode Island plans to continue offering them to more and more communities across the state.

We began this work by collaborating with Jennifer LoCosale-Crouch, a Transition to Kindergarten expert and professor at the University of Virginia, whose contributions have been invaluable. Jennifer shared an excellent resource she and colleagues developed for the National Center for Quality Teaching and Learning, Planning the Transition to Kindergarten: Collaborations, Connections, and Six Steps to Success. We have used this document as the anchor resource for all of our Transition to Kindergarten work in Rhode Island and elsewhere. It reviews the four types of Transition connections (child-school, family-school, school-school, and school-community) and describes a six-step planning process. I’m also sharing a companion list of sample Transition Activity Ideas by Connection. Many thanks to Jennifer. We recommend these documents and hope you find them helpful.

Hint: Where Planning the Transition to Kindergarten says, “Head Start” read, “Head Start, community-based preschools, and family childcare.”

How States Can Support the First Decade of Children’s Lives

Sponsored by the National Association of Early Childhood Specialists on October 17th, this webinar explores the implications for state policy of the recent study, All Children Learn and Thrive: Building First 10 Schools and Communities.  This report looks at innovative schools and communities that combine alignment across early childhood and elementary education and care (children’s first 10 years) with family engagement and social services.

Laura Bornfreund, New America’s Director of Early and Elementary Education Policy, moderates a expert panel that includes:

  • Samantha Aigner-Treworgy, Commissioner, Massachusetts Department of Early Education and Care
  • Elliot Regenstein, Partner, Forsight Law and Policy Advisors
  • Brett Walker, P-3 Alignment Specialist, Early Learning Division, Oregon Department of Education

Click here to see the presentation slides, and you can find segments of particular interest at the following video locations:

  • 00.00–2:51: Nicole Madore (Maine Department of Education) provides a welcome based on Maine’s First 10 experience. Laura Bornfreund sets the stage for the presentation and discussion.
  • 2:52–19:32: David Jacobson introduces First 10 Schools and Communities drawing on the experiences of Normal, IL, Omaha, NE, and Cambridge, MA.
  • 19:32–29:09: Commissioner Aigner-Treworgy discusses the context in which First 10 initiatives have emerged in Massachusetts and the implications of First 10 moving forward.
  • 29:44–36:40: David Jacobson shares how Multnomah County, OR promotes culturally-responsive partnerships with families and sets the stage for the panel discussion on the implications of First 10 for state policy.
  • 41:00–1:30.00: Laura Bornfreund, Elliot Regenstein, and Brett Walker discuss the implications of First 10 for state policy, covering topics including state assessment, ESSA and PDG, learning from Oregon’s Kindergarten Partnership and Innovation Fund, and the benefits of the “First 10” frame.

 

Campaign for Grade Level Reading Webinar: First 10 School and Community Partnerships

Annotation 2019-10-01 205629

The Campaign for Grade Level Reading is holding a webinar on First 10 School and Community Partnerships on October 8 from 3:00–4:30 ET.. Please join me, Cris Lopez Anderson (Buffett Early Childhood Institute), and Brooke Chilton-Timmons (Multnomah County Department of Human Services) to learn about the exciting work happening in these communities. 

You can find the registration link below, and here is an invitation from Cris that went out in the Campaign’s newsletter:

I’m excited to invite you to join me for a webinar highlighting the First 10 Schools and Communities model that is promoting collaborations between school districts and the early learning and family support fields to promote early school success. Please join us on Oct. 8, from 3–4:30 p.m. ET to learn about this model and how it is being implemented in two Grade Level Reading (GLR) communities — Omaha, Nebraska, and Multnomah County, Oregon.

First 10 schools and communities are forging partnerships with families and organizations to reach children long before they arrive at kindergarten. In Greater Omaha, the Buffett Early Childhood Institute at the University of Nebraska is providing technical assistance to 11 school districts as they promote schools as community hubs to support families and children from birth through third grade. We will also learn how county leaders in Multnomah County, Oregon, are promoting community schools and early engagement with young children and families.

REGISTER

I hope you will join me and my co-presenters as we discuss this promising model and explore the potential connections with GLR coalitions.

ESSA and Early Childhood: How States Can Learn from Leading Edge Local System-Building

Annotation 2019-07-31 150230

New America and the Center for Enhancing Early Learning Outcomes (CEELO) are partnering on a series of posts about the implications of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) for early childhood. You can find my contribution to this series here: The Leading Edge of Local System-Building: ESSA and Continuity Across the First Decade of Children’s Lives. And here’s an excerpt:

“ESSA requires school districts that receive Title 1 funding to coordinate with Head Start programs, and it gives states the flexibility to expand early childhood, incorporate early learning into school improvement plans, improve transitions to kindergarten, and improve educator professional learning. How should states and communities best take advantage of these opportunities? What would continuity of high-quality experiences look like in practice, and what are the implications for state and community system-building?

I suggest that leading-edge school and community partnerships focused on the first decade of children’s lives can help answer these questions and provide new direction to states and communities as they implement ESSA plans.”