It's time to celebrate Child Care Professionals on Child Providers Appreciation Day!
As most early childhood professionals know the true reward of the work is witnessing the children growing and learning. Unfortunately, sub-par wages and lack of professional recognition can deflate the spirit of even the most passionate educator. Nevertheless, there is some good news! Various efforts to support early childhood workforce improvements are taking place across the country, including:
- Power to the Profession is a national collaborative working to unify the early childhood education profession. The two-year initiative began in May 2016 and is comprised of a national taskforce of organizations. The work includes engaging
,stakeholders to inform a framework of guidelines which address: Competencies, Qualifications, Career Pathways, and Compensation. For more information and how to get involved visit the National Association for the Education of Young Children www.NAEYC.org/profession
- The National Workforce Registry Alliance reports that 39 states now have established workforce registry systems. Having a systematic process of capturing our workforce data can be used to inform public policy. The data set provides insights on education, career pathways, professional development, and achievements of the early childhood and afterschool workforce. https://www.registryalliance.org
Furthermore, Federal laws are increasingly recognizing the importance of early childhood education.
- Every Child Succeeds Act (ESSA) has integrated early learning into school improvement, including building career pathways for early childhood educators. https://www.ed.gov/essa?src=ft
- The Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) reauthorization in 2014 put more attention to pre-service and ongoing professional development. In March 2018, the Omnibus bill passed which includes the largest increase in discretionary child care funding in history. To read more visit Zero to Three.
We know that 90% of a child’s brain growth occurs in the first 3 years of life. Surely, there is no greater argument for why early care and education professionals deserve respect and adequate compensation.
The message is out and the public is listening. Let’s keep the momentum going! Visit the NAEYC website for messages you can share on social media.
And, don’t forget to celebrate YOU!!!