News

Children’s Advocate Named to Close Gap in Early Childhood Education

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Sun, 11/20/2022 - 13:20

STORY AND PHOTOS BY KAREN BOSSICK

The Wood River Women’s Foundation has taken the next step with its early learning initiative with the appointment of Kathryn Ivers as the project director of the Wood River Early Learning Collaborative.

One of Ivers’ first tasks was to form an Advisory Council to steer the creation of an early education community for all young children in Blaine County, especially those from underserved families.

The Wood River Women’s Foundation selected early childhood education—specifically, what they called “Closing the Opportunity Gap in Education”-- to be the focus of its first ever Focus Grant. It is collaborating with the Idaho Association for the Education of Young Children (Idaho-AEYC) on the project.

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'This is the dream': Nampa elementary school offers on-site child care to address critical needs of staff

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Mon, 10/31/2022 - 08:39

NAMPA, Idaho — Working parents face an array of challenges in order to meet both the demands of their employer and their children -- but what if more workplaces offered on-site child care? Some industry experts say that could be a solution toward keeping working parents satisfied - and employed - long-term.

"I can speak for myself and for other moms that have said, you know, 'If we don't get a daycare in here, I might have to quit," Clark said. "Because of the cost and also just finding something out there. Right now to find a daycare you have to tell them right when you know you're pregnant. Before you tell anyone else, you have to tell your daycare so that you can get a spot."

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Rising child care costs impacting Treasure Valley families

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Sun, 10/23/2022 - 11:39
One mom said that parents are not only trying to find affordable childcare but also quality childcare, and the two are not always synonymous.

BOISE, Idaho — Childcare is one of the biggest expenses for parents – a necessity that costs many families more and more every year.

Marina Ebrahimpour is a mom of three. Not only are Ebrahimpour and her husband trying to find affordable childcare, they are also trying to find quality childcare.

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Kristi Meston chosen as project manager for Early Learning Collaborative

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Wed, 09/28/2022 - 08:34

Effective Sept. 6, Kristi Meston has taken on the role of Project Manager for the newly formed Collaborative for Early Learning. Kristi, who has made Teton Valley her home for 20 years, has devoted her career to working with children and families. After many years of working both in traditional wilderness programs and wilderness therapy, as well as with children with emotional and developmental disabilities in schools and youth homes, she obtained a Master of Social Work in order to formalize her ability to support her community. Upon completion of graduate school, Kristi spent eight years working in our local schools, establishing and strengthening existing relationships with local providers, stakeholders, and families- something she feels will serve her well in her new role.

2C Kids receives $750,000 as part of community grant

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Sat, 09/17/2022 - 15:21

Thanks to additional funding through the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare community grant program, $750,000 was recently donated to the 2C Kids Succeed Early Learning Collaborative.

A portion of the grant will go to helping the Nampa Early Childhood Learning Center as they serve 20 more children and hire a certified teacher, helping 2C Kids continue to build a healthy community for Canyon County children, according to a press release.

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Families need care — employers can help

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Mon, 09/05/2022 - 15:26

United Way fights for the health, education and financial stability of every person in every North Idaho community.

It does this by supporting and developing programs and services that address the community's most pressing needs.

As local businesses navigate inflation, supply chains and competitive hiring markets, they are looking for solutions to recruit and maintain a strong workforce.

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United Way in Pocatello awarded $20,000 for American Falls pre-school scholarships

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Sun, 09/04/2022 - 15:28

The United Way of Southeastern Idaho has received $20,000 from the Idaho Future Fund in the Idaho Community Foundation for preschool scholarships for children in American Falls.

This funding will further the already under way efforts in American Falls to ensure that every child in American Falls will have the opportunity and access to high quality early learning programs that meet their family’s needs.

“We are extremely grateful to receive this funding from the Idaho Community Foundation,” said Felice Otero, director of ImPACT East Idaho at United Way of Southeastern Idaho. “This grant makes up one third of the preschool scholarships for American Falls, providing students and families that have limited financial resources the ability to participate in high quality programs that will have lifelong benefits.”

Can Advocates in Red States Make the Business Case for Child Care?

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Thu, 08/04/2022 - 15:33

One of the many revelations for Americans during the pandemic was the role of child care in making the economy work.

To keep companies staffed and women in the workforce, child care programs need to be open and available, people realized. And more than that, they need to be accessible and affordable, too.

It’s one of those pandemic lessons that people keep learning again and again, as labor shortages persist. Employers feel it—they can’t fill their open jobs. Employees feel it—they have to make choices about whether to remain in the workforce, and if they do, they have to step in and do the jobs of their would-be coworkers. And consumers feel it, too—from supply chain issues to long lines to inflationary pressure.

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First round of grant funding open to expand child care access across Idaho

Submitted by Idaho AEYC on Tue, 07/26/2022 - 15:37

The deadline to apply for the first round of child care expansion grants from the Idaho Workforce Development Council is Aug. 1, and council Executive Director Wendi Secrist expects the $15 million in available funding this fiscal year to quickly disappear.

During the 2022 legislative session, the Idaho Legislature approved $15 million from state fiscal recovery funds in the federal American Rescue Plan Act to be used for child care infrastructure grants. The grant funding is intended to be used to shorten waitlists for child care at high-quality facilities, including dollars that can help offset start-up costs for businesses and providers looking to expand. After the August deadline, the program will have two more rounds of funding with deadlines of Oct. 1 and Jan. 1. If the $15 million is not spent by then, the council will open another round.

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