Weekly News March 9, 2020

Bills Update

The following have reported out of committee

HB 5220 An Act Expanding Care4Kids to Parents Participating in Even Start or in Certain Secondary Education Programs 

HB 5222 An Act Expanding Eligibility in the Care4Kids Program for Homeless Families

HB5213 An Act Concerning the Creation of a Pilot Program for an Early Childhood Business Incubator Model

HB5121 An Act Concerning Certain Protections for Group and Family Child Care Homes

SB282 An Act Establishing a Tax Credit for Employers That Make Payments Toward Child Care Costs of Employees

HB5336 An Act Requiring Background Checks for Certain Employees of Licensed Youth Camps

SB87 An Act Concerning Eligibility for the Office of Early Childhood’s Child Care Subsidy Program for Victims of Domestic Violence

SB227 Act Concerning a Fair Work Week Schedule

We are also concerned about:

HB5439 (section 4) which would change the elementary education certificate back to K-6 and thus making the Early Education preK – 3 cert much less attractive to prospective teachers

Coronavirus Updates and Resources

Over the last few days, three Connecticut residents - in Wilton, Bethlehem, and New Canaan - have been diagnosed with COVID-19. Last week, two others with Connecticut ties and worked in Connecticut hospitals were diagnosed. On Tuesday, Governor Lamont issued both civil preparedness and public health emergency declarations, which will enable him to take specific and swift action determined necessary to protect the safety and health of residents in the state, including the temporary suspension of certain laws or regulations. To read more about the governor's actions, click HERE

The Office of Early Childhood has released a memo to help child care providers prepare for the potential spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Read the document HERE (English) or HERE (Spanish).

On March 12, OEC issued a new memo to providers of services to young children. It's available in English & soon will be available in Spanish on the OEC website. 

Education Development Center has released some resources for schools and child care:

ChildTrends has also released a new resource for states that have laws on how schools should address a pandemic. It can be found HERE.

Some providers have expressed concerns about finding cleaning agents such as bleach, as people have been stocking up on items. The Environmental Protection Agency has approved a new list of cleaning products that can help kill the Coronavirus. The list can be found HERE.   

UPDATE: Advocacy Day Changes

Due to the pandemic known as COVID-19, all public gatherings at the Capitol have been canceled until further notice (outside of committee meetings). This will impact our planned Advocacy Day on March 25. We will however, hold our first virtual Advocacy Day in lieu of the in-person event on March 25. More details to come, but we are considering a 9 a.m. video conference, followed by on-line advocacy projects.

Count All Kids Census Campaign Update

The Census count is nearly at our doorsteps! The invitations will be hitting mailboxes between March 12-20. This is what the invitations will look like:

Child care providers - Remember, if you're interested in hosting a Census Party, please contact Melvette Hill at melvettehill@gmail.com. Due to the Coronavirus, adjustments may have to be made to these events, if necessary.

The Alliance has access to a children's book called "We Count," which helps explain the Census. Currently, we have books available in English and Spanish. To obtain the books, we will need one of your organization's members to complete a short training session to become "Census Experts" (Wednesdays from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. online). To register for the training, click HERE. To fill out the Google form for interest in the books, click HERE.

If you follow us on Facebook or Twitter, you will see our daily Census posts. Please feel free to share these posts via your social media accounts, so we can bring more awareness to the upcoming Census. If you're looking for us on Facebook, search "CT Early Childhood Alliance," "CT Association for Human Services," and "Count All Kids Connecticut." If you're looking for us on Twitter, search "CTECA" or "CAHS_org."

The website is also up and running at www.countallkidsct.org!

Childhood Conversations/Together We Will Canceled

Out of growing concern for the spread of COVID-19, the planning committee of the Childhood Conversations/Together We Will Conference has made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 conference. 

For anyone who has already registered, you will be receiving an email regarding your registration. For more information, click HERE