Provider Report Explores Pandemic-Driven Decisions
The COVID-19 pandemic brought widespread disruptions, closures, and chaos to early learning and care services and systems designed to support family well-being. To understand how state and local agencies could better support Oregon-based child care programs and help them remain open during public health emergencies or other situations that create pressure for closures, researchers at Portland State University (PSU) Center for Improvement of Child and Family Services (CCF) and OSLC Developments, Inc. (ODI) conducted a study.
The goal of this study was to learn from home-based child care providers who made the decision to close permanently during the pandemic and understand why they closed, and what, if any, supports might have enabled them to stay open and continue to serve families with young children.
Home-based providers represent an important component of the child care system and provide much-needed care for many of Oregon’s families who identify as Black, indigenous, and persons of color. Further, home-based providers may be less likely than center-based programs to have cash reserves and other resources that might help them stay in business during emergencies such as that posed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Deadline Approaching: Early Learning Higher Education Consortia
The Early Learning Division is pleased to announce the funding of Intergovernmental Agreements (IGA) for the Early Learning Higher Education Consortia. This funding will be provided to the following community colleges: Blue Mountain Community College, Chemeketa Community College, Clackamas Community College, Columbia Gorge Community College, Lane Community College, Linn-Benton Community College, Mount Hood Community College, and Portland Community College.
The Early Learning Higher Education Consortia focuses on removing barriers and opening access to early childhood education degree completion. By establishing partnerships with universities, colleges, Child Care Resource and Referral agencies, and other groups, the consortia may:
- Expand access to ECE career pathways
- Reduce financial and non-financial barriers
- Empower more students to attain ECE degrees and certificates
The Consortia Request for Applications (RFA) closes May 8, 2023. For more information on the IGA and RFA, visit the consortia RFA page.
Healthy Families Oregon Celebrates 30 Years
Healthy Families Oregon (HFO) is celebrating 30 years of supporting families in building a strong foundation for our communities and families.
HFO is a free, voluntary home visiting program offering support and education to Oregon families who are expecting or parenting newborns.
During home visits, each family’s values and strengths are honored. Trained staff support and empower parents to build nurturing parent-child relationships, learn about child development, and access community resources. Families choose to participate in weekly home visits for six months or longer, depending on what they need and want. The visits can continue for up to three years.
To learn more about HFO and find a program near you, visit the HFO webpage.
Department of Early Learning and Care Driving Principles Finalized
After extensive internal and external partnerships, feedback sessions and community input, the soon-to-be Department of Early Learning and Care has finalized its mission, vision and values statements. Here are the official statements; thanks to everyone who helped shape them!
The Department of Early Learning and Care fosters coordinated, culturally appropriate, and family-centered services that recognize and respect the strengths and needs of all children, families, and early learning and care professionals.
All children, families, early care and education professionals, and communities are supported and empowered to thrive.
Equity: We are committed to dismantling the systems of oppression that harm and create disparities for communities who are historically and institutionally excluded. We are adopting anti-racist principles, expanding access to services, and ensuring community representation and shared power in agency efforts. We are fostering a culturally responsive environment in which all individuals can experience a sense of belonging as they access programs, services, and resources.
Respect: We believe that family is a child’s first teacher. We are committed to nurturing family partnerships built on mutual respect. We recognize and value the knowledge and experiences of families, early care and education professionals, and community partners.
Trust: We value the public’s trust through honesty, transparency, and keeping our commitments.
Relationships: We acknowledge the importance of nurturing relationships in the field and with community. We listen to, support, collaborate with, and celebrate the professionals, families, and children in our communities.
Safety: We put safety and well-being first for our children, families, and early learning and care professionals.
Continuous Improvement: We set goals, seek input from community, and use data to improve quality of service and programs, increase quality and efficiency, and drive innovation.
Integrity: We are accountable for our actions, our decisions, and our work to reliably achieve high-quality outcomes.
- Share feedback on Raise Up Oregon, Second Edition
Does Oregon’s plan for early childhood address your community’s priorities? Let the state know what you, your children, and your family need by completing a feedback form. The deadline to give input is 5 p.m. on Sunday, April 30. Visit the RUO page for more information.
- May Provider Information Sessions: Mark Your Calendars
Wednesday, May 17 | 6 to 7 p.m. All provider types. (Interpretation available)
Thursday, May 18 | 6 to 7 p.m. All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish)
More details and a link to register will be coming soon. Watch previous information sessions on the ELD’s Provider Information Sessions page.