A tremendous round of applause to the many advocates and government officials, including Teachstone’s partners at the Early Childhood Education Consortium (ECEC) and all of those in the Office of Child Care, who worked tirelessly for a bicameral, bipartisan bill to reauthorize the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG). The slightly modified House version passed the Senate at the end of the day on Monday and was signed into law by President Obama on Wednesday.
I remember the palpable energy and excitement in Washington over the last CCDBG reauthorization when I moved there in 1997. The legislation had passed the year before, and I was working as a fellow in the Child Care Bureau (now the Office of Child Care), the office tasked with administering the CCDBG.
The 1996 reauthorization of the original 1990 legislation provided a new focus on education for parents and others on child care selection through child care resource and referral, as well as quality improvements for providers and teachers through improved professional development, compensation, licensing, and monitoring.
The new version of the CCDBG gets us closer to the goal of providing high quality early childhood education to all young children in the United States.
Highlights of the quality provisions in the law that passed this week include
Opportunities abound for reaching more teachers and ensuring all children are in classrooms with teachers who have the knowledge and support to interact effectively to support children’s learning and development.
We are especially excited about the specific infant-toddler set aside which reflects the growing wave of awareness of the importance of the first three years. Check out Teachstone’s infant-toddler resources, including the Infant-Toddler Video Library Companion, which helps build rich conversations around our classroom videos with a printed facilitator's guide.
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From coast to coast and around the globe, there’s a common thread that unites teachers: wanting to be better for their students.
Even when things are tough in education, educators are striving to be their best. Their dedication to equitable, ongoing development is what inspires Teachstone’s work. It will take a systematic, data-driven approach to reach the day when all children are afforded excellent education and care. And, we are enthusiastic partners in getting to that goal.
By the end of every summer, the education world erupts with talk about back-to-school. This year was no different. The air was full of optimism. Vaccines had rolled out, many of us took our first vacation in a year and a half, and my inbox was full of the “best back to school” sales. Sadly, as quickly as many schools welcomed children back into the classroom with open arms, they were forced to close again due to increases in COVID-19 infections.
Admins, teachers, students, and families alike may be feeling concerned, cautiously optimistic, pessimistic, or confused. If you’re like me, you might feel all of the above all at once. But, I am taking comfort in knowing that this year, we are armed with more data.
Teachstone applauds the removal of three Confederate statues in Charlottesville, VA. Our organization is headquartered in this Southern city and we have seen first-hand the visceral reaction evoked by these tributes to figureheads of the Lost Cause movement. While the cause of the Confederacy in the Civil War has been lost, the war on racism has not yet been won.
Every state, every district, every school, every teacher faced decisions that they had never anticipated in the last academic year. As the end of the 2020-2021 school year approaches, it’s time to reflect on those decisions, learn from others, and prepare for the fall ahead.