Today, Chair Peisch of the Committee on Education provided an update regarding early childhood education in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis. See below for her message.
Currently, there are 523 emergency exempt providers that have been approved by the Department of Early Education and Care since March 23rd, serving an average of 2,500 children per week. Commissioner Aigner-Treworgy announced yesterday that these subsidies will continue to be paid to providers in order to support their workforce. Should non-essential businesses open before then, EEC is in the process of developing a thoughtful plan to phase-in childcare in a way that is aligned with reopening businesses and the economy across the Commonwealth.
Additionally there are partnerships that EEC has developed in order to assist early educators, families and children during this difficult time.
For early educators:
EEC has partnered with Care.com to create a portal specifically for Massachusetts essential workers and early educators. Essential workers looking for in-home child care will be able to find eligible EEC-licensed, certified, or approved educators who are currently not working and may provide skilled in-home care. This will help educators get connected to alternative employment opportunities they are qualified for, help identify additional resources for children and families with unique needs (e.g., children with disabilities), and further support essential workers. Massachusetts essential workforce families get 90-day free subscription to Care.com to use this service.
Technical Assistance for Businesses:
EEC has partnered with the Children’s Investment Fund to provide technical assistance to providers seeking to better understand the business supports available at both the state and federal level. This support—including legal and accounting resources—will be tailored to the businesses in the child care field to help providers navigate this crisis and be prepared to serve families. To launch this technical assistance, there will be the following webinars this week featuring experts from Goodwin Law and the Children’s Investment Fund:
- April 22 from 2-4pm: Goodwin’s Neighborhood Business Initiative, Children’s Investment Fund, Neighborhood Villages & Strategies for Children Webinar
- April 24 from 11am-12pm: Children’s Investment Fund , CliftonLarsonAllen, Goodwin Procter, and Clarendon Early Education Services Webinar
- April 24 from 1-2pm: Children’s Investment Fund , CliftonLarsonAllen, Goodwin Procter, and Clarendon Early Education Services Webinar
Resources for Early Learning for Educators & Families:
EEC, in partnership with the WGBH Educational Foundation, has created this media-rich site of educational resources to help support adults who teach, nurture, and care for children from birth to age five. These resources were developed by a team of early childhood experts, educators, and parents and they are available in both Spanish and English. To access these resources, please click here.