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Baby Promise: Infant-Toddler Quality and Supply Building Pilot

Oregon is experiencing a true crisis in infant and toddler child care. The state lacks a supply of quality child care options for our youngest children. There are many barriers that Oregon families experience such as: long wait lists, limited choices of providers and few that meet families’ needs or expectations, and costs of care that rival the cost of college tuition.

To complement the quality strategies that exist in communities currently, to stabilize and increase quality of existing care, and to help expand family choice, the Early Learning Division is piloting a set of supply and quality building strategies. The infant-toddler quality initiative will utilize Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) funds to provide an opportunity for Oregon to launch a pilot of quality infant-toddler early education programs. This infant-toddler initiative is targeted to serve low-income families in communities struggling to find and keep high quality care for infants and toddlers.

The pilot is to develop and refine strategies that build a supply of infant and toddler care.

Baby Promise Frequently Asked Questions

Updated on December 19, 2018: added answers to questions 45 and on.

  1. Since families must meet Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) eligibility, will programs be permitted to collect both ERDC subsidy dollars and dollars from Baby Promise? 

Families must be eligible for ERDC but do not actually have to be enrolled in ERDC. Under this circumstance, the CCR&R would pay the entire contracted slot payment to the provider. The Early Learning Division is still working with the Department of Human Services (DHS) on the exact structure of eligibility and what happens when a family is found eligible for Baby Promise but is already accessing ERDC. There are a few options to explore with DHS, one would be to transfer the family to Baby Promise from ERDC and the other would be a temporary fix for the provider to collect ERDC funds and a supplemental payment from the CCR&R to make the contract slot payment full. There will be a need to work closely with early education providers and the local DHS partners that administer ERDC. Families that are eligible for Baby Promise may already be enrolled in services through DHS and already may be receiving the benefit of ERDC. Baby Promise is designed to be the contracted slot payment for families, so there would eventually need to be a transition to paying the full contracted slot through the CCR&R.

Early Education Programs will not be permitted to collect the full ERDC payment and a full contracted slot payment on top of that. The payment will not exceed the agreed upon budgeted cost per child that CCR&Rs have budgeted in partnership with each provider. The Early Learning Division (ELD) is working with DHS to develop a process to streamline these contracted slot payments. More information will come as the ELD works with selected pilot programs.

  1. Will the slots be fully contracted or a blend of DHS pay/contract?

ELD is working with DHS to design a process that allows the slots to be fully contracted by these payments, however, if this isn’t a quick process to develop, it would temporarily be a blend of DHS payment and a supplemental contracted slot payment until the permanent process is developed. Families that are eligible for ERDC but are not enrolled in ERDC, would receive the full payment from the CCR&R as a contracted slot payment. More information to come on whether or not the blend of ERDC and contracted slot payments will be necessary for families enrolled in ERDC.

  1. Will there be a standard process for how families meet the 185% of poverty?  

ELD is working with DHS to develop a standard process for contracted slots eligibility. However, it is possible that eligibility may need to be determined by the CCR&R. If this is the situation, ELD will provide training to a standardized process for eligibility. More information to come related to eligibility determination after the pilot sites are selected.

  1. Eligibility requirements: In order to calculate the 185% Federal Poverty Level eligibility, is it a 12-month picture or the moment in time?

Requirements for assessing families’ income eligibility for the Baby Promise program will align with current practices required for calculating eligibility for ERDC. Proof of income would be provided for last month and current month in order to verify eligibility.

  1. Is DHS then going to pay the providers for the slots?

These contracted slot payments will be paid by the CCR&R. The ELD is working on specific ways to ensure that communication between CCR&Rs and DHS is clear so that families’ needs are addressed and pathways to gain access to services are easily understood.

  1. Does DHS manage/track enrollment or just determine eligibility?

More information to come related to this important question.

ELD is working with DHS to develop the most viable process for eligibility determination. The CCR&Rs may be the entity determining eligibility and keeping corresponding documentation that verifies eligibility. There will be more discussion with the pilot regions selected in order to finalize the structure for eligibility determination and enrollment tracking.

  1. Do we have the ability to enroll eligible families into ERDC.  Is ERDC open for enrollment currently or are there waitlists?

The Baby Promise Pilot funds for subsidy are separated out from general ERDC funding that is administered by DHS. There is not waiting list related to these Baby Promise funds. They are specifically allocated to serve the families that will be enrolled within this pilot. There will be a separate process for determining eligibility for these enrollment opportunities outside the regular ERDC process. ELD anticipates some specific partnership role between DHS and pilot regions to ensure that communication is structured in a way to best meet the needs of families with low-income. There are a few options that the ELD is exploring on how eligibility will be determined, whether that will be completed by the CCR&R or through DHS, but there will be more information to come related to this question as the process is fully developed.

  1. Families need to be working – can full-time students also qualify?

Yes, full time students that are eligible for ERDC would also qualify for Baby Promise.

  1. Will families still have a copay or will the copay be lowered?

Families will not have a copayment. That cost will be covered in the cost per child negotiated with each early education provider. As CCR&Rs are working with early educators to place slots for Baby Promise, it will be important to develop a cost per child that allows families’ copayments to be covered and to also reflect a cost per child that covers the purchase of diapers, wipes, and formula for children that are enrolled in Baby Promise.

10. Will Baby Promise cover the entire family copay if they have multiple children in care?

More information to come related to this important question.

Contracted slots through DHS are structured to pay the entire family copay. It is ELD’s preference to maintain that opportunity to reduce or fully cover the copay structure for all children receiving care in the family. However, these contracted slot payments are coming from the CCR&R and there will need to be a process developed in partnership with DHS to seamlessly address this. There is potential that the family is accessing ERDC for the older children and Baby Promise funds for the children under age three. The copay requirement would still be generated within the ERDC system. The ELD will be developing communication mechanisms between DHS and the Baby Promise program pilots to address that.

  1. Part-time working families – would that include those parents going to school?

ERDC eligibility includes criteria for parents attending school. Baby Promise eligibility will either mirror this or if the working/attending school criteria is removed, the parent eligibility would be determined on the income requirements. Either way, parents attending school would potentially be eligible for these services based on income eligibility requirements.

  1. If it is a contracted slot, would we have freedom to pay prior to care (monthly), rather than providing a reimbursement? 

Yes, these payments would be able to be made monthly prior to care being provided.

  1. Is it acceptable for one or more regions to collaborate and submit a joint letter of interest?

If the regions can outline a structure that is cost effective, a joint collaborative letter of interest from two combined CCR&R regions would be acceptable.

  1. Are Regulated Subsidy (RS) providers eligible?

Yes. If RS providers are interested in moving through the process to become registered or licensed and understand that they will work toward Spark rating, to achieve a 4 or 5-Star rating, then it is appropriate for a CCR&R to contract with an RS provider, taking them where they are at and moving them toward quality improvement.

  1. Do these need to be new slots or can slots be shifted to Baby Promise pilot eligible families? 

This can be a combination of new slots and existing slots that eligible families are enrolled in. It is possible to work with new early education providers or early education sites that open additional classrooms, additional center-based or family child care locations. It may also be an early education provider enrolling an existing family that is eligible for Baby Promise and already attending their program. These families can be already accessing ERDC or ones that are found to be eligible for ERDC as you are recruiting families.

  1. What happens when children age out (turn 3)?

When children turn three years of age, they would transition off of this contracted slot subsidy program. Six months prior to the child aging out of Baby Promise, an extensive transition process will be conducted in partnership with the family. There are multiple possibilities within transition. This family may be enrolled in a program that has Preschool Promise slots and they may transition into one of those opportunities. Some Baby Promise locations may be operated by Head Start grantees, and they may be eligible to move into a Head Start slot when they age out of Baby Promise.

In the event that the family’s preference is to keep their child in the family child care environment or a center that does not have a publicly funded slot for preschool aged children, they will transition to a private-pay enrollment opportunity. With the six month transition period, if the family is still within their 12-month eligibility for ERDC, they will transition to an ERDC paid slot with a copay. If it is time to re-determine eligibility, this six month transition time will be effective for discussion available options to meet the family’s needs.

  1. How will we administer/monitor slots, keeping them within the criteria?

The structure that CCR&Rs submit to address the operation of the Baby Promise program should address both the quality of care, technical assistance and coaching AND the oversight of quality through monitoring of the contracted providers. Annual requirements related to reporting and onsite monitoring will be included in the oversight of the early education partnering programs.

  1. The question in the 5th bullet under C. Budget:  “Does this mean we can count the subsidy per child toward 10% match?” 

Indirect expenditures cannot be claimed against the funds allocated for direct per child/per year contracted slots subsidy. This will assist in your organization’s ability to show 10% match on all federal funds requested in this letter of interest.

This statement means that the subsidy dollars through Child Care Development Block Grant Funding (CCDF) is only able to pay for direct services to children, or the contracted slot payments that are paid to providers. No administrative, indirect or other expenses can be charged to the subsidy funding. However, any indirect costs that are associated with administering the subsidy payments to child care providers can be tracked as match toward the 10% because these indirect expenses must be funded by another source of funding within the CCR&R lead organization.

  1. A program has asked if these are contracted slots. If a child leaves the program, does the payment stop until a new child is enrolled?

These are a form of contracted slot. If a child leaves the program, the payment will continue for 30 days as long as another eligible child is enrolled by the 30th day after the previous child left the program. The child that left the program still maintains 12-month eligibility contracted slots through Baby Promise if they move somewhere within a region that has Baby Promise.   They can enroll in a vacant slot within another early education provider’s program working with Baby Promise. If they choose not to do so, they still have 12 month eligibility within ERDC.

  1. How many hours per day does “full day” refer to as stated in the Baby Promise Pilot structure? What does “full time” mean? 6 hours? 8 hours? Please define full-year (e.g. weeks of service)

ELD is working on a structure for this program that will require families to meet the income eligibility guidelines but may not require a minimum level of work hours in order to qualify. More information will come as the ELD works with selected CCR&R regions in this pilot.

Full year services (at least 136 hours/month, 1,632 hours per year minimum), would align with the full DHS requirements for eligibility for Employment Related Day Care (ERDC). The ELD is working on a proposal to expand eligibility for Baby Promise beyond the eligibility for ERDC. If this becomes a reality, income eligibility (185% or lower) would be the main eligibility factor and there would not be a minimum level of employment necessary to qualify. This may also have an effect on the minimum hours per day requirement. However, with this pilot, ELD wants to explore viable options to meet families’ needs locally, so it is recommended that CCR&Rs develop a variety of strategies with early education providers that address the needs of working families up to 10 hours per day. This will potentially affect the cost per child that is negotiated with those early education providers, the cost may be higher. If it is demonstrated that enrolled families are able to fulfill their work requirements in a program that is less hours, ie., 8 hours per day, then this would be an acceptable structure.

If ELD is able to announce a change to the eligibility factors related to work requirements, the required hours per year would be reduced. But for budgeting estimation purposes, please use the minimum hours above as a guide for working with early education providers and mapping out costs for the year.

In the webinar, a question was asked about requirements for weeks of service. 52 weeks was discussed but that would not allow staff to have time for preservice or other trainings throughout the year to meet requirements for continuous quality improvement. ELD is not specifying the exact number of weeks required as much as requesting that the services meet the needs of working families year round and to be mindful of the unintended consequences that can occur when an early education provider closes for several days and what that does for family members that are unable to take leave time away from work or their work schedule is inflexible.

Here is an example of a possible conversation with an early education partner program about hours and weeks. If a program is operating for 48 weeks throughout the year, and providing 1,632 hours per year (the minimum), that would average out to close to 7 hours per day, 5 days per week, and would allow a program to close down for some inservice days and additional annual preservice training and prep for a new year of service for children. Considerations should be discussed with early education providers to lessen the burden on working families, so that closures do not affect the family’s employment. Planning for back up care, alternative arrangements with substitutes, or planning with parents to help them address periods without care will be critical.

  1. If a parent only wants to bring their infant part time, will the provider have to find children to fill that spot?  

It depends on how the Baby Promise program is structured related to eligibility. If work hour requirements are a part of the eligibility for families, then part time is defined. Families would be expected to attend at those minimum required hours in conjunction with working corresponding hours. If work hours are not part of the eligibility determination, children would be able to attend the Baby Promise program regardless of the parent’s part time schedule. However, addressing the needs of families that may be eligible and only interested in part-time will have to be discussed as the process moves into the pilot program conversations with selected regions.

  1. What are the requirements for Infant Toddler Specialists? Degree or Step on the Registry? Can the position be shared by two people in a job share type setup?

A Bachelor’s Degree is not required, however it is preferred. The Infant Toddler Specialist (ITS) positions are considered equivalent to the system’s current Quality Improvement Specialist (QIS) position requirements. The difference is that the individuals hired for the ITS positions should have experience working with infants and toddlers or coaching and training for early education providers in infant-toddler caregiving. Please review the QIS requirements as a minimum guideline for hiring ITS, and also ensure that individuals hired for these positions have a level of experience and education that contributes to their ability to coach and train early educators in infant and toddler development and relational care.

  1. Do early educators or the staff of the providers that CCR&Rs are contracting with need at least a Bachelor’s Degree?

No, early education providers would be required to attain an Infant Toddler Child Development Associate Credential at a minimum. This is a Step 7 on the Oregon Registry. Other combinations of education and infant/toddler experience will also apply.

  1. Will K-12 programs be able to participate if they only follow a school year calendar? Or will they need to offer year round care?

More information to come related to this important question.

This program is designed to partner with early education providers to provide year-round care. If this program maintains full alignment to ERDC requirements to work with employed families, school based programs would need to develop methods to provide care beyond the school calendar year to meet the minimum hours per year.

If Baby Promise eligibility is structured in a way that does not require a minimum number of work hours per month, the ELD may consider a model that addresses care within the school year calendar. For instance, if a program that is designed to meet the needs of teen parents enrolled in school settings, and the early education provider’s schedule during the school year is aligned with the school year calendar, the program could meet the required level of service by providing regular home-based services to enrolled families during the summer break. This option is not sanctioned as an option currently, this is just an example for CCR&Rs to think through as they recruit potential partners. Partnership agreements aren’t expected to be made until a grant agreement with ELD is in place with the CCR&R to conduct the Baby Promise Pilot. So this example is provided as a way to at least open conversations with potential mixed-delivery providers in school based settings. Until the ELD is able to make a determination on whether there are work requirements, this is only a guide to conversation.

  1. When is the ZERO TO THREE Training of Trainers (TOT) Scheduled?

The ZERO TO THREE Critical Competencies training contract with ZERO TO THREE is still in process and dates have not been scheduled definitively yet. The ELD is projecting that this training will be scheduled in the New Year and no later than April 2019 to begin. It will take 5 months to finish the training unless it is put on a faster track process. Each month, ZERO TO THREE trainers will come to Oregon for two days to train our group of up to 30 trainers that have been selected to participate. The trainers will receive 60 hours of content at a Set 3 level offering to be able to deliver 45 hours of training to child care providers in communities once they are trained. There are 15, 3-hour modules within the 45 hours available. These 3-hour modules when presented to child care providers will give attendees a Set 2 level certificate. The trainers will receive Set 3 level certificates because they are learning the material at a higher level of theory in order to be able to train child care providers at a Set 2 level once certified to train.

  1. ZERO to THREE. It is great that this will be offered. Won’t the pilot be over by the time trainers complete the TOT? Meaning, they will not be able to use this training to support providers during the pilot. Just a thought.

The ZERO TO THREE training will begin no later than April 2019. The pilots are structured with funding that ELD intends to continue beyond the first year’s allocation. Funding extends through September 2020 initially and additional allocations will be made if funding continues at the level anticipated. So the training will set the stage for ongoing development of the Baby Promise program. If Baby Promise is expanded legislatively, additional training of trainers will be conducted to increase the capacity of our training available in local communities to Baby Promise providers and early educators in general. It will be exciting to build the capacity of available professional development hours for educators serving children 6 weeks to 3 years of age.

  1. When trainers are trained in the ZERO TO THREE TOT, will they be given materials to deliver that training in Spanish back in our community?

ELD is working with ZERO TO THREE to partner on the translation of materials within a cultural context to ensure that the materials and content are representative and responsive to the needs of early educators that speak Spanish. The ELD will explore the options available to do the same thing for other languages as the process moves from Pilot to ongoing program. There is not an estimated timeframe for the completion of this yet. More information will be provided as this is developed.

  1. What is the per child cost range for Baby Promise?

ELD is suggesting that the cost per child is an individually based discussion with each potential early education partner. For example, a registered family child care provider may be providing more hours of service to children and may require a slightly higher cost per child. Or a child care center may provide lower ratios and have added teachers in their classrooms, increasing the cost per child. These discussions will be individually based between the CCR&Rs and the early education providers in their pilot regions. For the purpose of the budget for the Letter of Interest, CCR&Rs can create a general estimate of what they believe the average cost per child will be based on the initial interest they have generated from early education partners. The ELD has estimated a range between $16,000 and $18,000 however, it is understood that the actual cost will vary between partnerships. Some programs may cost more than $18,000 per child but ELD is projecting an average that falls in the range above. If costs in the Pilots are higher, authorizing those costs will be on a case by case basis in partnership between the pilot region CCR&R and the ELD.

ELD is not expecting that the cost per child estimates to be fully agreed upon nor solidified in the Letter of Interest. ELD is more interested in seeing the connections that have been preliminarily made with interested early education providers and the estimated number of slots that those entities might commit to. The cost per child estimates will just help in the process to decide how many slots will be allocated to each pilot region.

  1. It seems that the per child cost is a flat rate that it is not enough to support the financial needs of the providers (space, insurance, utilities, PD, overhead, subs, etc). If a provider has 4 slots and we pay $16k per slot, it means $64k. 50 hours per week x 4 weeks x 12 months= 2,400 hours of service and $64,000/2,400= $26 per hour. Is that a correct assumption?

Review the cost per child information above. Cost per child will be individually calculated with each early education provider that the CCR&R contracts with. This allows for individualization based upon the program’s structure, enrollment, unique system factors addressing curriculum, environment, and physical space. The example utilized above is accurate but is only taking into account the income related to Baby Promise. In order to accurately depict an early education provider’s true program costs and revenue, all enrollment should be taken into account. Baby Promise funding is a distinct increase in cost per child utilizing the public funds allotted. Once pilot regions are selected, CCR&Rs will be able to work out individualized cost per child contracts with early education providers. If the range between $16,000 and $18,000 per child is not sufficient for a specific early education environment, the CCR&R will work with ELD in order to come to agreement on a reasonable cost per child to provide services. Part of this pilot is to assess the viability of the program and the funds necessary to operate quality infant-toddler care successfully in Oregon. This contracted slot payment is intended to increase the overall funding that the early education program has available to pay a living wage to staff engaged in Baby Promise. Or if the program is a registered family child care provider, it gives the owner more funding to contribute to their wage and enhance their program once all expenses are covered within their small business.

  1. Who is going to be part of the review group?

There will be a review panel comprised of ELD leadership to select the pilot regions.

  1. Can they (Early Education Providers) have a professional development plan to work toward those education requirements? It sounds like that’s the case but wanted to check. 

Yes, CCR&Rs will develop professional development plans with early educators based on their individualized needs in order to meet or exceed the minimum standards for working with infants and toddlers.

  1. Where do we find the number of working families eligible for ERDC? And can we get that by zip code?

ELD will gather available data related to working families’ eligibility for ERDC for regions to review. This information is not necessary for pilot program Letter of Interest submissions as much as it will be helpful for ongoing planning and conversations within communities to develop opportunities that meet the needs of families with children birth to age three.

  1. Are you expecting work to be completed prior to contract execution? (early identification of providers, Letter of Intent (LOI) from providers, etc…).

ELD is anticipating that CCR&Rs will generate conversations with interested early education providers, seek interested partners and assess an estimate of the number of contracts and corresponding slots that they may have with programs if the region is selected as a pilot.

  1. We belong to an agency that provides CCP and EHS in counties served by another SDA. Can we cross SDA to serve those programs with this pilot?

The answer for this question depends upon a few factors. It would be important for the CCR&Rs involved to discuss the boundary situation in this case.   Technically, the Service Delivery Area that each CCR&R is representing are the boundaries that the ELD is considering. If there is agreement between CCR&Rs, the ELD would consider possible partnership proposals that cross SDA boundaries. This could be the CCR&R which oversees the SDA in question subcontracting with the EHS program that crosses into their boundaries, or potentially a discussion about a service area agreement that addresses your ability to cross into a neighboring SDA to provide Baby Promise services.

  1. Ramp-up: staggering start dates like EHS/CCP did in initial roll out

Pilot regions will be selected based on their ability to secure partnering early education providers rapidly and move to enrollment of children as soon as possible. However, ELD anticipates that programs will be onboarded in a staggered manner. As an example, one area may have a few family child care providers and child care centers with children that are already eligible for Baby Promise. These programs would most likely enroll sooner and begin services early on. Other early education programs may require a few months because they are opening a new classroom. Children in these opportunities may be enrolled later. It will be important to show enrollment beginning as soon as April 2019, and to understand each program’s plan to get to full enrollment by August 2019 at the latest.

  1. Is the Professional Development model one that provides in center coaching, or will staff be pulled out of services to receive training?  This is important to know how to determine staffing plans for services.

The ZERO TO THREE training will be provided to CCR&Rs for use in various ways. Classes will need to be provided in communities either within the Focused Child Care Network serving infant and toddler caregivers or in other classes offered to a wider range of partnering early educators. However, once trained, these materials are accessible to the trained staff member within the CCR&R to be utilized in whatever manner makes most sense for their region. Some Focused Child Care activities occur in one-on-one and coaching opportunities also. Coaching may be utilized by the CCR&R to model interaction methods, allow the educator to practice, reflect upon their practice and develop new skills with the competencies within the ZERO TO THREE training framework. ELD anticipates that the professional development will be individualized by region and by early education partner needs.

  1. Up to 10 hours of care a day- this means you would need at least three staff to cover opening, closing, and breaks.

Depending upon the early education provider environment that you are working with drives the structure of the staffing. The example in this question above could be the structure within a child care center infant classroom. The 3rd staff person may be part time to cover lunches and breaks depending on the structure of the program. However, if this was a Certified Family Child Care program, the structure may require two employees throughout the day, and a Registered Family Child Care program may be operated for 10 hours by the owner of the program and no additional employees.

  1. Family Engagement/home visiting- where would this fit into the teacher’s day? There would need to be days set-aside or additional staff in order to maintain ratios while the teacher did visits, or again the teacher is being asked to work overtime. 

Family engagement is a critical aspect of providing quality infant-toddler relationship based care. Some programs are developed with this structure built in to the cost per child and may choose to provide family service components through home visits, but they are not required within this program.

However, a clear structure for family engagement needs to be embedded in the program. This can be structured in many different ways, potentially by engaging parents within the early education environment or developing daily communication protocol so the family is informed, ensuring that the emergent nature of an infant’s rapid development is coupled with strong partnership with the parents. Within that structure it would be important to design or strengthen the balance between daily engagement, monthly and annual opportunities. Teacher conferences in the center are also an important way to individually address the progress, outcomes and needs of each child and family and can be a touchpoint at least twice per year.

  1. I wonder if a mock schedule for the work day and/or training calendar might be offered to help us think about how we can meet all the requirements?

This is a good suggestion as the ELD works with pilot regions once they are selected.

  1. Is there a required compensation level for the infant/toddler teachers and aides? If so this adds to the cost the program must take on, in order to be equitable we could not raise the salary of some of our teachers (infant/toddler) but not all (preschool/school age). As a school district it would raise an issue that would need to be worked through with our classified union. 

There will be a suggested compensation level for the infant-toddler teachers. This is again, part of an individualized process with each early education provider. Creating a specific wage for a registered or certified family child care owner and teacher is not easily determined but it is expected that these funds would increase the overall revenue that the business is able to achieve.

The concerns raised in the statement above are understandable. The ELD understands how this opportunity may cause growing pains in our current system related to pay parity. In general, infant-toddler teachers are the lowest paid, least valued professionals in the early learning system. It is extremely important to move the field of early education into the same category of qualification and pay expectations as other professionals in education. At a point of transition, these changes can be difficult. However, the Baby Promise teachers will be expected to develop quality in their environments that requires a higher level of commitment to observation, assessment, individualized curriculum planning, and evaluation than might be expected of other classroom’s staff. With the additional requirements it is expected that pay is structured higher to address the additional quality they will be providing.   CCR&Rs and ELD staff will work with early education partners to provide sample job description language that could be used to help classify staff appropriately based upon their workload.

  1. When Baby Promise (BP) rolls out throughout the state and BP no longer connected to ERDC, will parents be required to bring their child so many hours/days per week? It seems like there was a great deal of difficulty feeling like preschoolers should be in school for 6 hours. Are infants going to be required to be in care for 8?

It has not yet been determined if the structure will change if additional state funding is allocated to expand this program. State funding may offer an opportunity to assess how the structure of eligibility may change however the ELD is committed to utilizing this program to meet the needs of working families. Requiring children to be in care is not the goal of this program, Baby Promise offers an opportunity to address the needs of families that are struggling to find quality care for their youngest children, and in many cases are unable to find care so that they can go back to work.

  1. If family care providers lower their group size for more infants, they will be losing one to two full time children. Not sure that this is going to make fiscal sense for them, has someone done some budgeting exercises to see what it might look like for them?

Budgets have been modeled for these situations, however this will be a conversation with each early education provider that CCR&Rs contract with. In many instances, registered and certified child care providers are not providing care for school age children that could be a part of their daily ratios. These children are usually enrolled part-time in the afternoon after school dismisses. The group size will be discussed with providers and cost per child budgets will be designed based on the need to ensure that lowering enrollment is still advantageous to the provider. Children currently enrolled in these programs will not be unenrolled in this process; reduction in slots will only occur as a natural progression of the child care provider’s program structure, when children age out, or families move out of the service area, etc. Reduced enrollment overall allows the provider to focus on aspects of quality relational care that are necessary for young children to thrive.

  1. Question in regards to requirement for full time status. I need clarification of the “full time 5 day work week” in order to qualify for the program. I have parents on ERDC that are working full time but not the traditional Monday – Friday work week. Many of the jobs on the coast are in the service industry so families are often working Saturday and Sunday where care is provided by family/friends.

As a part of this pilot, the ELD is hoping to work with selected regions to develop strategies to reach families in need of odd hour, and weekend care. If early education providers that are being recruited are already providing evening and weekend care, this is an opportunity to address quality for nontraditional work hours. The 5 days per week requirement would be a part of negotiations with the ELD and the CCR&R. Some trade-offs might be made in order to gain opportunity to increase the availability of care in communities for families that do not work the traditional M-F, 8-5 schedule.

  1. Under the heading “Identify Name of Person to be contacted for Clarification of Application package below:” What is the difference between the first two lines, Name (first, Last) and Printed Name

The Cover Page that CCR&Rs will submit with the Letter of Interest is essentially requesting that the person to contact for application clarification print their name twice. This was not the intention, please feel free to use one line for printing your name and one for signing it, or just print your name once. The use of these two lines is most specifically for attaining contact information, so it is not critical for you to sign the cover sheet in the same manner as the lines specified for the Person Authorized to commit the organization to services.

  1. I am assuming a program can have both private pay children and children subsidized through Baby Promise in the same class – is that correct? Will a program need to report percentages of cost of running the program base on the percentage of Baby Promise children served, as is the case with Preschool Promise?  

Yes. Early Education Programs that CCR&Rs are contracting with can have a mix of private pay and Baby Promise enrolled children. They may also have children enrolled in other publically funded programs such as Preschool Promise, Head Start, Early Head Start, Early Head Start Child Care Partnerships, or Teen Parent Programs, etc. The second half of this question relates to reporting requirements that have not been fully determined. More information to come as the reporting and evaluation design is finalized.

  1. We have met with some early educators and they had asked if the ELD has taken into account (as it relates to the per child budget) the recently negotiated DHS Rate increases beginning January 1st with Licensed Family Child Care, especially as it relates to Rate Area A?

This is a good question as it relates to the cost per child for Baby Promise. The reason that the ELD has listed a range for the cost per child is to address the needs of the individual contracts with early education programs throughout Oregon. The structure of each program is different and it depends on several factors; potentially the cost of living in specific areas of Oregon, the number of families that the program serves, the model that they use to offer services to children and families, and how they have setup additional services provided to benefit families in areas of quality that help the program to maintain higher Spark ratings, etc. The recently increased DHS subsidy rates are a great opportunity for families and early educators serving young children. The difference with these funds are they are contracted slots, which are a more stable version of subsidy payment for the early educator that does not fluctuate based on the factors that trigger lower payments due to participation or eligibility factors of ERDC. Contracted slots are setup to be a payment that early educators can count on within their budget for planning and ongoing service development purposes. The cost per child of Baby Promise is designed to give the CCR&R that is contracting with early educators the opportunity to develop a rate that addresses the increase in responsibility, the higher quality that will be maintained within the programs, and the need to address pay equity of infant/toddler teachers providing Baby Promise services. If an early education provider lives in any of the DHS rate areas, there is still a need to discuss true costs associated with providing the level of care that is expected to maintain Baby Promise partnership, so it is possible for a provider to have a higher cost per child in lower paid DHS rate areas as it relates to the provider’s individually developed program structure for quality services.


State Contacts

Jon Reeves

Infant/Toddler Specialist
O: 503.947.0668