Weekly News - May 1, 2017

Happy Retirement, Juleen!

Juleen and AliceJuleen Flanigan, retired from EdAdvance last week (formerly Education Connection, a RESC in western CT). She served as the director of early childhood services, where she managed the development and operations of direct service programs, such as Birth to Three and Family Resource Centers. Prior to taking this position in 1996, Flanigan served as the director of the Northwest Regional Family Services Coordination Center for Education Connection, as a program evaluator for the CT Department of Children and Families, director of the Parent Aide Program for the Danbury Regional Commission on Child Care, Rights, and Abuse; a consultant and evaluator for the Behavioral and Organizational Consultants Associates in New York; and a regional liaison for the Birth to Three Interagency Council in Hartford.  She received her Master's Degree in Social Work from Fordham University, her Bachelor's Degree from Molloy College and her 150 post-graduate certificate in Chemical Dependency from the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency. Last week, colleagues and friends gathered in Danbury and Litchfield at EdAdvance to send Juleen off. Juleen has been an active member of the CT Early Childhood Alliance since 2002, spending a number of years as a co-chair.  Juleen will remain with EdAdvance part-time for the next six months to help with the transition. We wish you nothing but the best as you start this next chapter of your life, Juleen!

Financial Woes Continue in CT

State officials are finding out that income tax collections, ie., revenue to the state, plummeted at the end of April. That's bad news for those who are looking to close a large funding gap in the current budget. CT NewsJunkie has MORE

QRIS Listening Sessions Starting Next Week

Starting May 9 in Middletown, statewide listening sessions will begin on the draft Quality Recognition and Improvement System (QRIS). To see the list of upcoming listening sessions, click HERE. To take a look at the draft QRIS, click HERE (you'll have to turn the document).

Campaign for Paid Family Leave to Host "A Seat at the Table"

On Thursday, May 4, from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., the Campaign for Paid Family Leave will host "A Seat at the Table: Women of Color Conversation on Paid Medical and Family Leave." The panel discussion will focus on the voices and stories of women of color and how they’ve been impacted by a lack of paid leave. For more information, click HERE.

Campaign for Paid Family Leave Hold's Mother's Day-Themed Lobby Day at Capitol

On Thursday, May 11, from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m., three days before Mother's Day, the Campaign for Paid Family Leave will hold a lobby day at the State Capitol. For more information and to RSVP, click HERE.

Advocacy in Action

Some good news from the National Women's Law Center (NWLC): Congress has reached agreement on an FY 2017 spending measure that will keep the government funded through September. Thanks to your efforts, the budget includes modest increases to several child care and early education programs including:

  • The Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) received an increase of $95 million, bringing total discretionary funding to $2.856 billion. This was a bigger increase than what was in either the original House and Senate bills.
  • Head Start received an increase of $85 million, including $80 million to cover cost of living increases and $5 million in additional funding for Early Head Start-Child Care Partnerships also for cost-living, bringing total Head Start funding to $9.253 billion.
  • The 21 Century Community Learning Centers after-school program received an increase of $25 million, bringing total funding to $1.19 billion.

Some programs received flat funding or slight decreases in funding:

  • Preschool Development Grants received flat funding
  • Special Education Preschool Grants (Part B of IDEA) received flat funding.
  • The Grants for Infants and Families program (Part C of the IDEA) received a slight decrease in funding.

CCDBG demands much more to keep us from losing more children next year, but this is a start and we have your voices to thank for raising awareness with the public  and policy makers about the importance of child care to help parents earn and children learn. It paid off, even in a very tough environment. Let’s keep pressing and please join us on the May 18Senate Call-in Day for FY18 funding. If your organization would like to participate in the call-in day, please email Jessica Church (jchurch@nwlc.org) and she will share a script and some suggested email alert language. Advocates will be asking the Senate to increase funding for CCDBG by $1.4 billion in FY 2018 -- that'sthe amount necessary to ensure that children do not lose child care assistance next year.

Kids Count Special Report: Race Equity in the Five Connecticuts

On May 15 from 10 a.m.-12 p.m., in Room 1D of the Legislative Office Building in Hartford, CAHS, in conjunction with the Commission on Women, Children, and Seniors, will release its Annie E. Casey Kids Count Special Report: Race Equity in the Five Connecticuts. The report analyzes how place and race influence how children and families fare, looking at data based upon geographic location and race. In order to do this, CAHS used data samples from five Public Use Microdata Areas (PUMAS), representing areas in Connecticut: Rural, Suburban, Urban Periphery, Urban, and Wealthy. The event will include two panels: one featuring key stakeholders and legislators and the other featuring data experts from across Connecticut. To RSVP, click HERE 

 

Support for the Alliance comes from of our members and our funders: The William Caspar Graustein Memorial Fund, Connecticut Health Foundation, Children's Fund of Connecticut, Connecticut Community Foundation, Community Foundation of Greater New Britain, Community Foundation of Greater New Haven, The Fund for Greater Hartford, and The Eder Family Foundation