Recently, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) released the Early Head Start – Child Care Partnerships Year One Report. We encourage you to read the report, as there’s fascinating information relevant to current EHS-CCP grantees as well as information that can help inform strong proposals for EHS-CCP Round 2.
For instance, take a look at the lessons learned. Some of the struggles that we’ve discussed on recent webinars are also highlighted in the report. If you’re thinking about applying for EHS-CCP Round 2 funds then being aware of the challenges experienced in the first round can only make your proposal stronger. In a nutshell, the report stresses six lessons learned, including:
- Partnership building takes time and effort.
- The start-up period is absolutely critical. In EHS-CCP Round 1 that period was 18-months.
- Child care partners, and particularly family child are providers, needed support with business operations practices.
- State subsidy policies can create challenges for EHS-CCP implementation.
- There is a high need for support related to fiscal and budget challenges.
- In order for state and local systems to continue to expand access to high quality care, the long-term vision for EHS-CCP must be part of ongoing conversations.
The report also provides interesting information about technical assistance and start-up activities. During the first year of EHS-CCP funds were used to support partnerships, facilities improvements, supplies and equipment, and staffing and professional development. Take staffing, for example. Funds were used to support activities ranging from hiring additional staff to reduce ratios, to pay for background checks, and scholarships for staff to work toward degree attainment. Understanding how Year One funds were spent provides insight into what ACF might expect to see from EHS-CCP Round 2 applicants as well. (With, of course, taking into account the lessons learned!)
The reach of the initiative is impressive, with about 32,000 children expected to be served when full enrollment is reached in the next few months. If you’re thinking about EHS-CCP Round 2 then stay in touch as we approach the anticipated release of the Funding Opportunity Announcement (FOA). We’re about 1 month away!
Foundations for Families offers EHS-CCP grantees targeted technical assistance and strength-based coaching of key start-up staff. We have helped multiple organizations design, plan for, and draft successful proposals for the first round of EHS-CCP and plan to offer the same expertise for any new opportunities. Please be in touch with Amy Augenblick, Executive Director, at 703-599-4329 or Augenblick@foundationsforfamilies.com to learn about how we can support you and your program.