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Sept2012EarlyCareEducationEupdate

Early Care and Education E-Update, Fall 2012

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IN THIS ISSUE

Resources of Interest

A CLOSER LOOK AT THE EARLY LEARNING FELLOWS PROGRAM

NCSL Early Learning Fellows logoLooking back, NCSL’s first year-long Early Learning Fellows program for 35 state legislators and staff proved to be beneficial. One of the goals of the Fellows program was to create an opportunity for legislators and legislative staff to be part of a peer learning community and to engage with research and policy experts who are leaders in the field  through a meeting and four webinars. The program was designed to support legislators and legislative staff who are experienced or emerging leaders on early childhood and early learning issues. The kick-off meeting was well received and we conducted four webinars on best practices, the science behind early childhood, professional development and teacher quality on children’s outcomes, and partnering with the private sector on early childhood. A handful of early learning fellows are also engaged with other NCSL projects, such as home visiting. During the 2012 legislative sessions we have highlighted the work of a number of Fellows in the monthly newsletters and communicated through a listserv and the Fellows website.

As the program moves into the second year this fall, NCSL will announce to state legislative leadership another round of Early Learning Fellows applications. Legislative leaders will have an opportunity to nominate legislators who would like to become more engaged over the coming year on birth-to-eight policies. The Fellows' work will include two legislative meetings on timely early childhood issues and two early learning webinars. The December 2012 kick-off meeting is attached to Fall Forum, followed in the summer of 2013 by a second in-person meeting to discuss what Fellows have learned about their legislative sessions. We will also conduct two webinars covering topics that are of interest to the Fellows.  Please contact julie.poppe@ncls.org for more information. 

WRAP UP FROM NCSL 2012 LEGISLATIVE SUMMIT

NCSL Legislative Summit logoThis year's NCSL Legislative Summit in Chicago, Ill., attracted more than 1,500 legislators and staff. The meeting provided legislators and legislative staff the opportunity to meet colleagues from across the country, share ideas, talk with experts, learn from nationally renowned speakers, discover policy solutions and develop a states’ agenda for NCSL to take to Washington, D.C.  

Two early care and education sessions were featured at the Legislative Summit. Read more on the Home Visiting:  Models and Policy Options for Creating the Best Programs session below. The second session included an hour long tour of Educare Chicago, a nationally-recognized early childhood education program.  

For a closer and more in-depth look at the Human Services and Welfare Committee Sessions from the 2012 Legislative Summit in Chicago click HERE. Mark your calendar for the 2013 Legislative Summit, Aug. 12-15, 2013, in Atlanta, Ga.
 

WHAT'S NEW WITH HOME VISITING

In the upcoming months, NCSL will continue to work with state legislators to explore legislative proposals to strengthen state programs, connect with the executive branch to ensure home visiting program coordination and share state lessons and challenges in home visiting implementation. NCSL will also work with states to address the impact of the federal budget process and implication of the presidential and state elections on home visiting, as well as what states are doing to continue with programs and services beyond the Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program (MIECHV) funding.

Home Visiting webpage updates.  NCSL will be making changes and improvements to the way we disseminate information about home visiting to legislators and staff.  To receive periodic information and stay on top of state developments and federal updates, sign up for the home visiting listserv today by contacting phuonglan.nguyen@ncsl.org.   

Coming soon….
Home Visiting: A Legislators’ Guide publication and resource guide developed under the direction and input of the NCSL Home Visiting Advisory Group and support from the Pew Center on the States.
 
Home Visiting webinar.  Look for information about a webinar early next year as states prepare to open the 2013 sessions.  

Home Visiting Session at the 2012 Legislative Summit. A panel of home visiting legislative leaders at the Legislative Summit discussed effective home visiting models, state policy options and how best to integrate a home visiting program into the comprehensive early childhood care and education system. Sponsored by the NCSL Human Services and Welfare Standing Committee and moderated by committee vice-chair Delegate Christopher Peace from Virginia, the legislators discussed the recently enacted home visiting legislation in Maryland as explained by Delegate Sheila Hixson and challenges and lessons learned from New Mexico’s implementation of home visiting by Mimi Aledo-Sandoval from the New Mexico Legislative Finance Committee.  

A group of 18 legislators and legislative staff from 14 states convened in Hartford, Conn., in June for a two-day meeting Investing in Families Through State Home Visiting Programs. The meeting featured speakers from Child FIRST, a research-based home visiting program and one of the nine models approved for the federal MIECHV program. Meeting participants also learned about efforts in Connecticut to connect home visiting to the larger state system of early childhood education and care (for more information about Connecticut’s public-private initiative,The First 1,000 Days: Getting It Right from the Start, click HERE). Other topics covered during the meeting include the Supreme Court's ruling on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA),  federal budget updates, and Medicaid options for financing state home visiting programs. The meeting agenda, presentations and additional home visiting resources are available HERE.

ACRONYMS - WHAT DO ALL THOSE LETTERS MEAN?

Do you ever feel confused when acronyms are being used? Unsure if you really know what all those letters standing side by side mean? We know how easy it is to get bogged down, overwhelmed and frustrated by all the acronyms being used in everyday speech. 

Here are some of the most common and popular Early Care and Education acronyms. If you have other acronym suggestions to highlight in future Early Care and Education E-updates please contact alison.may@ncsl.org.  

 

CCDBG Child Care and Development Block Grant
CDA Child Development Associate certificate
ECAC Early Childhood Advisory Council (also SECAC – State Early Childhood Advisory Council)
ECCS Early Childhood Comprehensive Systems
ECE Early Childhood Education or Early Care and Education
EHS Early Head Start
EIS Early Intervention Services
ELC Early Learning Challenge
EF Executive Function
FFN Family, Friend and Neighbor Care
GLR Grade Level Reading
HS Head Start
IEP Individualized Education Program
KEA Kindergarten Entry Assessment (also KRA: Kindergarten Readiness Assessment)
MIECHV Maternal, Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting
PD Professional Development
QRIS Quality Rating and Improvement System
RTT Race to the Top
SLDS Statewide Longitudinal Data Systems
IDEA

The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act

 

IMPROVING THE ODDS FOR YOUNG CHILDREN

Source:  National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP)

The National Center for Children in Poverty recently released  an online tool, The Young Child Risk Calculator. This interactive tool will show users how many children under age six in each state are experiencing serious risks to their development. The tool allows users to select from three age groups (0-3, 3-5, and 0-6) as well as three economic and various other risk factors known to affect children’s development.

The National Center for Children in Poverty released their latest Early Childhood State Policy Profiles, a comprehensive view of state policies in the areas of health, early care and education, and parenting and economic supports, that affect the health and well-being of young children in low-income families.

A COUNT FOR QUALITY:  CHILD CARE CENTER DIRECTORS ON RATING AND INPROVEMENT SYSTEMS

Source:  CLASP  & The National Women’s Law Center - February 2012

This report from the National Women’s Law Center (NWLC) and the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) provides information gleaned from interviews with 48 child care directors in eight states discussing issues related to the benefits and challenges of using statewide quality rating and improvement systems (QRIS).

2012 KIDS COUNT DATA BOOK

Source:  The Annie E. Casey Foundation - July 2012


The Annie E. Casey Foundation’s 2012 KIDS COUNT® Data Book shows both promising progress and discouraging setbacks for the nation’s children. While their academic achievement and health improved in most states, their economic well-being continued to decline. This year’s Data Book uses an updated index of 16 indicators of child well-being, organized into four categories: Economic Well-Being, Health, Education, and Family and Community. The new methodology reflects the tremendous advances in child development research since the first KIDS COUNT Data Book in 1990.

PARENTS AND THE HIGH COST OF CHILD CARE:  2012 REPORT

Source:  Child Care Aware – 2012

This report from Child Care Aware® of America examines the costs associated with child care centers in every state, finding that fees continue to increase with the current average annual cost of care for an infant higher than the annual cost of tuition at a four-year public college.

PUTTING IT TOGETHER:  A GUIDE TO FINANCING COMPREHENSIVE SERVICES IN CHILD CARE AND EARLY EDUCATION

Source:  CLASP – August 2012

CLASP’s newly released Putting it Together: A Guide to Funding Comprehensive Services in Child Care and Early Education aims to help states look beyond the major sources of child care and early education funding and consider alternative federal financing sources to bring comprehensive services into early childhood settings.

FAMILY AND COMMUNITY KNOWLEDGE SYSTEMS:  NEW TOOLS FOR ENGAGEMENT

Source:  BUILD Initiative – July 2012

This brief outlines strategies by Minnesota to establish a data system that captures both formal and informal systems of early care and learning. Efforts are underway to collect child-level demographic and program participation data, child-level data on development and program site data on quality and to embed a framework of family and community engagement and support into a unified P-20 data system. Foundational elements of an effective data system are outlined by the Early Childhood Data Collaborative. The brief proposes ‘enhancements’ and additions to data collection of birth, pre-K screening, and kindergarten entry data to include family context and community moral and cultural values. This Minnesota initiative will develop a method for collecting family and community context data, develop methods for analysis, plans for dissemination and effective policy implementation based on analysis results. 

STATE GUIDE TO DEVELOPING SUCCESSFUL EARLY CHILDHOOD DATA SYSTEMS

Source:  ICF International – August 2012

This brief outlines the four cyclical steps to effective implementation of data system: Assess, Plan, Do and Evaluate. In particular, the brief recommends that when groups convene stakeholders to agree upon development of an early childhood data system, an expert ‘trusted advisor’ is involved to facilitate stakeholder input and engagement, political will and planning for implementation.
 


Outside links are provided for informational purposes only and do not constitute an endorsement by NCSL.

This e-update is made possible by the generous support of the Birth to Five Policy Alliance. This e-update is an informational service for state legislators and legislative staff who are part of NCSL's Child Care and Early Education Legislative Network. Contact Alison May for more information, (303) 856-1473 or to offer information from your state. You may also request to subscribe, if you are a legislator or legislative staff or unsubscribe by emailing alison.may@ncsl.org.

 

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