Early Learning and Kindergarten Guidelines Release

We are pleased to announce the release of Oregon’s Early Learning and Kindergarten Guidelines, which align the learning and developmental progressions for children ages 3-6 in the domains of approaches to learning, social-emotional development, language and communication, literacy, and mathematics. The Guidelines are designed to equip early learning providers and kindergarten teachers with a set of shared expectations for children’s learning and development in these domains, and our hope is that they help to foster shared approaches to developmentally appropriate and culturally-responsive classroom practices across the PreK-K spectrum.

The Guidelines, as well as a set of supporting resources, can be accessed on the Early Learning and Kindergarten Guildelines web page.

The launch of the Guidelines web page is the first of a multi-step process for helping early learning providers access and make use of the Guidelines. We will have hard copies as well as versions translated into Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese and Chinese available  in the very near future. Additionally, ODE and ELD staff will conducting trainings on how to effectively use the Guidelines throughout the state, and will be working to create professional development resources to help support implementation. Please check the Guidelines web page for regular updates.

If you have questions or would like more information about the Guidelines, please contact Brett Walker with the Early Learning Division at 503.378.5160 or by email at brett.walker@state.or.us.

Child Care Resource & Referral Request for Application Release

You are invited to apply!

The Early Learning Division is now accepting Requests for Application to be a Child Care Resource and Referral partner in the following service delivery areas:

Region County(ies)
SDA Multnomah Multnomah
SDA Marion-Polk-Yamhill Marion, Polk, Yamhill
SDA Washington Washington
SDA Clackamas Clackamas
SDA North Coast Clatsop, Tillamook, Columbia
SDA Linn-Benton-Lincoln Linn, Benton, Lincoln
SDA Lane Lane
SDA South Coast Coos, Curry
SDA South Central Douglas, Klamath, Lake
SDA Southern Jackson, Josephine
SDA The Gorge Gilliam, Hood River, Sherman, Wasco, Wheeler
SDA Central Crook, Jefferson, Deschutes
SDA Eastern Malheur, Union, Baker, Grant, Harney, Wallowa, Morrow, Umatilla

See our announcement for the RFA for more information.

Kindergarten Assessment Results Remain Stable

The Oregon Department of Education released results last week from the fourth annual Kindergarten Assessment (KA). The assessment is given each fall to entering kindergarteners and provides a snapshot of students’ foundational skills in three core areas of learning and development: early literacy, early math, and approaches to learning.

“At Early Learning, we continue to focus our work on closing gaps in opportunity and access for children and families that our system consistently and history have not served well,” says David Mandell, Acting Early Learning Systems Director. “The Kindergarten Assessment helps us determine where to direct funds to reach those children….”

Read the full Kindergarten Assessment news release.

Brain Building Oregon Website Launched

The Early Learning Division to Launch Website Promoting Brain Building in Children

(Salem, Ore.) – The Early Learning Division with the Oregon Department of Education is launching a website, Brain Building Oregon, to promote brain building in children from birth to five years old. The new site features 12 resources that are meant to serve as helpful examples for parents and caregivers who are supporting their children and getting them ready for kindergarten. Besides parents and caregivers, the website will also prove to be beneficial to early learning educators who are looking to add brain science into their work.

Brain building is important in early childhood because the first five years of life show the most significant rate of growth for the human brain. During these early years, the groundwork is being laid for skills in literacy, language, math, and more. Brain architecture is directly influenced by our environment and relationships, which is exciting but can be intimidating for parents and caregivers. Brain Building Oregon is intended to build on parents and caregivers innate strengths and support them where they are by providing various resources. Those include:

To learn more about these resources and others, please visit our website and learn how organizations throughout the state are promoting brain building. Brain building is something that can easily work within your everyday lives and can make a world of difference to the children in your care. Everyone has what it takes to be a brain builder. Visit www.brainbuildingoregon.com.

Amending Rules Governing License-Exempt Providers

The Early Learning Council will begin formal rulemaking to amend rules governing license-exempt child care providers accepting federal subsidies. The Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 2014 requires states and territories to conduct health and safety monitoring inspections for all child care providers who accept federal funding from the Child Care and Development Fund. The Early Learning Council will promulgate rules covering the on-site health and safety monitoring of licensed-exempt providers serving families receiving subsidies, now referred to as “Regulated Subsidy Providers.”

OAR Chapter 414 Division 180.

The Child Care Development Block Grant Act of 2014 requires the Early Learning Division to begin annual health and safety inspections of license exempt child care providers who accept federal subsidies. ORS 329A.505 authorizes the Office of Child Care to conduct on-site inspections when such inspections are required under federal law and authorizes the Office of Child Care to require improvements or corrections necessary to bring provider into compliance.

The Early Learning Council adopted administrative rules in June 2016 applicable to home-based Regulated Subsidy Providers. The rule revisions currently under consideration include revisions necessary to incorporate rules for center-based child care facilities and providers accepting subsidies.

Click here to view the revisions.

Public comment will be accepted through December 29, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. Comments may be emailed to Lisa.pinheiro@ode.state.or.us.


Central Background Registry Administrative Rules Revisions

The Early Learning Council will begin rulemaking to revise administrative rules relating to enrollment in the Central Background Registry established pursuant to ORS 329A.030.

The Early Learning Division, Office of Child Care (OCC) administers the Central Background Registry (CBR) pursuant to ORS 329A.030. OCC conducts background checks on individuals associated with child care facilities. Subject individuals (defined below) may submit an application for enrollment in the CBR to OCC. OCC then conducts a criminal and child welfare (child abuse and neglect) background check on the applicant and determines whether the applicant is suitable for enrollment in the CBR. The enrollment period is two years at which time the individual must apply for renewal of their enrollment. OCC conducts a quarterly LEDS (Law Enforcement Data System) check of all enrollees in the CBR.

Revisions to rules will allow the Office of Child Care (OCC) to conduct FBI fingerprint checks in all circumstances as required by Federal law as a condition for receiving federal Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) funds. OCC can no longer access criminal information from other states without having fingerprint identification for all applicants.

Rule revisions also bring the OCC suitability factors for background checks in line with the Oregon State Police (OSP) suitability factors found in ORS 181A.195 since they were revised as a result of HB 3168 and to ensure OCC is meeting statutory requirements.

Click here to view the rule revisions.

Public Comments will be received until December 1, 2016 at 5:00 p.m. Comments can be sent to Lisa.pinheiro@ode.state.or.us.

Portland Water Bureau Lead Testing

The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) was notified by the Portland Water Bureau (PWB) confirming that lead levels in the Portland water service area had recently exceeded federal standards. As public health officials and the agency responsible for regulating lead levels in municipal drinking water systems, OHA directed the PWB to take immediate action to accelerate corrosion control strategies and improve lead levels throughout the water system.

As a result, OHA called on the PWB to further protect public health and accelerate the timeline for improving lead levels in Portland drinking water, as a follow-up to Portland’s corrosion control planning process currently underway. The accelerated timeline calls for immediate steps, including increased corrosion control using current facilities, and aggressively implementing changes in the Lead Hazard Reduction Program to further protect vulnerable populations.

OHA recognizes that Portland’s current strategy has had an impact by reducing lead exposure and raising awareness of lead hazards, despite facing challenging infrastructure issues. OHA will continue to work with Portland to evaluate short- and long-term plans for accelerating corrosion control and reducing lead levels at the tap. OHA appreciates the PWB’s prompt action and looks forward to continued improvement of Portland’s drinking water.

For more information:

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