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Updates For Providers

What’s New: Child Care Updates

A resource for child care providers to track important updates.

ELD celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month 

September 15 to October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month, a special time when we recognize and honor the cultures, stories, history, and contributions of Hispanic communities. Here are some resources to help you celebrate, explore and increase your understanding this month and throughout the year.  

Next week, ELD’s Early Learning System Director Alyssa Chatterjee will visit a full immersion Spanish Preschool Promise program in Oregon. Follow ELD on Facebook for updates on her visit.  

NCPMI Logo

National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations (NCPMI): September Webinars  

Check out this month’s webinars as part of NCPMI’s Pyramid Model Webinar Series. These are recorded for viewing on your own schedule! 

Inclusion Benefits Everyone (Children, Families, Providers, and Directors)
A 3-part Within the Framework Series
September 16, September 23, and September 30 | 11 a.m. (PT) 

One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Using the Tiered Coaching Model for Practitioners
September 21 | Noon (PT) 

Visit https://challengingbehavior.org/training/webinars/upcoming-webinars/ for the complete webinar schedule and to register.  

Child Care Market Price Survey Coming Soon 

Oregon conducts a Market Price Survey (MPS) every two years to collect and capture the prices and supply of child care across the state. The 2022 survey will be conducted between October 1 and December 31 by your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) in partnership with The Research Institute at Western Oregon University, Oregon State University, and the Early Learning Division.   

As part of the MPS, you will be contacted to verify the rates you charge for your child care services and other information including your current child care capacity. Information is used for regional and state policymaking to ensure families have equal access to child care. In addition, the data collected during the MPS influences the Oregon Department of Human Services’ maximum subsidy rates for the Employment Related Day Care program and is the basis for tracking child care deserts over time. Rate information is not shared with parents and families and is combined with other facilities’ data for state decision-making purposes. 

Watch for more information from your CCR&R in early October! 

For more information, read the 2020 report: https://health.oregonstate.edu/sites/health.oregonstate.edu/files/early-learners/pdf/research/2020_oregon_child_care_market_price_study_-_main_report.pdf 

Piggy Bank Photo

Department of Early Learning and Care Agency Budget Request 

Every two years, state agencies are required to submit an Agency Request Budget (ARB) outlining their recommended investments for the Governor’s and Legislature’s consideration. The 2023-25 ARB is the first budget developed for the Department of Early Learning and Care (the agency the Early Learning Division will become July 1, 2023). On September 9, the 2023-25 ARB executive summary and full report were published on the ELD website.  

The DELC ARB focuses on three priorities: 1) centering families; 2) supporting the early learning workforce; and 3) sustainable operations. 

Visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/delc_abr for more information.  

Three school-aged kids play in a classroom setting together

Foundations for Learning – New required training 

On September 30, 2022, a new required training called “Foundations For Learning” will be available to early care and education (ECE) providers. This is a free, two-hour training on child development that will be available on the “Learning with OCCD” website in English, Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, and Traditional Chinese. This training will also be available in a self-study (paper version) on the OCCD website. 

All individuals currently employed in child care settings as of September 30, 2022 will need to complete the “Foundations for Learning” training before December 31, 2022. When individuals complete this training, they will: 

  • Fulfill this new training requirement 
  • Gain two hours toward the required hours in child development 

For more information and to find the training after Sept. 30, visit OCCD’s training page.  

Applications Open:
Central Background Registry (CBR)
Rulemaking Advisory Committee (RAC)
 

In June 2022, the Early Learning Council (ELC) adopted temporary rules in response to HB 4005 and SB 1547. These bills and the statutesexpanded background check requirements for those working and/or living in recorded preschool, recorded school-age, and Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) programs. All staff, volunteers, household members, and those who may have unsupervised contact with children must be enrolled in the CBR.   

The CBR RAC is a group of community members who will provide feedback on the proposed rule language and share input on the fiscal and equity effects of CBR enrollment requirements for adults working in these programs.   

If interested in participating, please complete the application and submit it by October 7, 2022. RAC meetings will be in late October and early November.    

A finger with a string tied around it as a reminder.

Reminders 

Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program: Provide Feedback on the Proposed Rules
We want to hear from you!  

  • Complete the feedback form on the draft rules by September 23, 2022 at 5 p.m.   
  • Register to present verbal testimony at the public hearing on September 20 at 5:30 p.m.   

To provide feedback and learn more about these rules and the rulemaking process, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/sepp.   

September Provider Information Sessions
The recording for the session (English language) on Wednesday, September 14 is now available: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKLyUSOvRBU&t=1s. The next session (Spanish language) will be 6 to 7 p.m. tonight, September 15: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_KaEItRdKRmK2UbLFvSqcfQ   

In these sessions, ELD shares information about the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC), updates on programs and opportunities, and the vision for the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) website.  

Register to attend ELD’s September
Provider Information Sessions 
 

Join us in September to:  

  • Learn about Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC)
  • Share your vision for the DELC website
  • Agency Reminders

Wednesday, September 14 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Interpretation available)
ZOOM: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_CKuvc9iGSq2Aj_D98qrjaQ

Thursday, September 15 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish)
ZOOM: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_KaEItRdKRmK2UbLFvSqcfQ

This is a virtual event. Registration is required to attend via Zoom. You may submit questions in advance on the registration form. You may also participate on ELD’s Facebook page live stream at the same time. ELD staff will monitor the Facebook comment section for questions.  

Note: Attendees using interpretation services (Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and ASL) should join the session via Zoom.  

Preschool Promise RFA:
Notice of Intent to Award

Thank you to all who applied for the Preschool Promise grant! We are deeply grateful for your passion and interest in serving children and families in Oregon. The Preschool Promise Notice of Intent to Award list was published on Tuesday, August 30 on the ELD website: https://oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise.  

Applicants who are included on this list will receive an email confirming ELD’s intent to award their program a Preschool Promise grant. If your program is not listed in the Notice of Intent to Award, we encourage you to continue working with your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) Agency, or other community partner, to reflect on the application process and how to benefit from RFA opportunities in the future.   

If you have any questions, email DELC.Procurement@ode.oregon.gov. 

Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program:
Provide Feedback on the Proposed Rules

On September 1, the Early Learning Division released a draft of the Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program Rules for public comment. These proposed rules will help the agency set up the new program and guide future design and requirements.  

We want to hear from you! Provide feedback on the draft rules:  

  • Complete the Feedback Form on the draft rules by September 23, 2022 at 5 p.m.  
  • Register to present verbal testimony at the public hearing on September 20 at 5:30 p.m.  

To provide feedback and learn more about these rules and the rulemaking process, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/sepp.  

Questions? Contact Remy Watts, ELD Rules Coordinator: remy.watts@ode.oregon.gov | 971-701-1535. 

Child Care Substitutes Provider Advisory Committee – Applications Open

Providers are invited to share their voices and help build a substitutes program for child care in Oregon. Providers of all types can apply now to be considered for the Child Care Substitutes Provider Advisory Committee. Committee members will be asked to share feedback on challenges and priorities for providers in creating a successful substitutes program. 

Virtual committee meetings will be each quarter starting September 2022 through June 2023. Providers selected to participate can earn subsidized substitute hours (four hours per meeting). The Early Learning Division (ELD) is funding the program in partnership with Western Oregon University, the developer of the Child Care Substitutes Program.  

The deadline to apply is August 31, 2022. 

Oregon Inclusive Partners Logo

Inclusive Partners Update 

On July 1, 2022, the Inclusive Partners program transitioned from the Oregon Department of Human Services to the Early Learning Division. This was the first of several transitions for early learning and care programs that will be consolidated under the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) starting July 2023. 

If you are not familiar with Inclusive Partners, it is a five-member team that provides inclusive resources, technical assistance, and subsidies for child care providers and families of children with higher needs in Oregon. The program works with child care providers caring for children who need additional accommodations to support inclusive care. The program offers supports for children and youths from birth through age 17. Families, child care providers, and other partners can request assistance at no cost. 

Learn more about Inclusive Partners and its support options by visiting InclusivePartners.org. 

Child Care Update Newsletter – Reader Survey Results 

Earlier this summer, we invited readers of Child Care Updates to take a survey to help improve the newsletter’s usefulness.  

Overall, most respondents thought the every-other-week frequency was just right. Most said they are receiving enough information on child care rules (87%), COVID-19 safety information (64%), and general agency news (65%). Other topics captured in the survey asked if respondents are receiving enough information on opportunities to engage with ELD (58%) and if they are receiving enough information on the implementation of the new Department of Early Learning and Care (60%).  

Based on the survey results, ELD will look to offer more information about training opportunities and mental health supports. We will also continue to share timely updates about the new Department of Early Learning and Care, along with safety, health, and rules affecting child care.    

Thank you to all who shared feedback and please sign up to subscribe if you don’t already receive the email updates!   

SOME THOUGHTS SHARED BY SURVEY PARTICIPANTS:

“I really appreciate getting the updates delivered to my mailbox. It’s been a great support while navigating my preschool through COVID! Thank you!”

“I’d like to see more mental health topics for providers and more grant info.”

“I like that we can read in our native language. Thanks!” (Spanish speaking respondent) 

Preschool Promise Request for Applications (RFA) Update  

The Preschool Promise Request for Applications (RFA) closed on Thursday, Aug. 4. We are grateful to all applicants for their interest in Preschool Promise and for their service to children and families in Oregon. We received a total of 212 applications requesting 3,137 slots at 267 sites.   

The review process is in progress and “intent to award” notices will be distributed by the end of August. Evaluation committees will use the evaluation criteria outlined in the RFA to score each application. If you have questions about your application, please email PSPRFA@ode.oregon.gov.

For more information and Frequently Asked Questions, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise.    

Save the Date: ELD Provider Information Sessions

Mark your calendar for the next events in our series of provider information sessions: 

Wednesday, September 14 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Interpretation available) 

Thursday, September 15 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish) 

More details and a link to register coming soon. 

Two Recall Notices: First Choice Glass Baby Bottles and 4moms MamaRoo and RockaRoo Infant Swings and Rockers

The U.S. Product Consumer Safety Commission issued two recalls in recent weeks. One notice is for First Choice Glass Baby Bottles, which contain levels of lead that exceed the federal lead content ban. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health issues. 

The bottles were sold exclusively on Amazon. The product was manufactured for the UK market only and not intended for sale in the U.S.  

The other product recalled is the 4moms MamaRoo Baby Swing, versions 1.0 through 4.0 and RockaRoo Baby Rockers. When the swing or rocker is not in use, the restraint straps can dangle below the seat and crawling infants can become entangled in the straps, posing a strangulation hazard. The recall includes models that use a 3-point harness. The 5-point harness model is not included in this recall. 

Early Learning Division Employee Identification Reminder 

We’d like to remind providers that they can ask any visitors to their facilities who identify themselves as an Early Learning Division employee to show an agency badge and business card before allowing entrance. Providers may also ask for their supervisor’s name and contact information. 

Preschool Promise Grant Application
Deadline is THIS THURSDAY, Aug. 4
 

Submit or complete your grant applications for Preschool Promise (PSP) by Thursday, Aug. 4 at 11:59 p.m. Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply. Questions? Visit the PSP webpage for frequently asked questions and answers https://oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or contact PSPRFA@ode.oregon.gov.  

Oregon Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program

In 2022, Oregon Legislature passed HB 5202 and approved funding to establish the Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program. Recently, Katrina Miller (ELD’s infant and early childhood mental health specialist) provided a short update at the July Provider Information Sessions. From April to July 2022, a group of community members formed a Rulemaking Advisory Committee and drafted the new rules for this program.  

For more information on the Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program, including a background, timeline, and resources, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/sepp. Watch for updates as this program continues to develop.   

What if instead of calling it…

The “Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program”

We called it…

The “making sure ECE providers have the training, coaching, consultation, and other supports they need to be able to support every child” program?

~ Katrina Miller
ELD Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist

Microscopic photo of the hMPXV or “MonkeyPox” virus

 What is hMPXV a.k.a “MonkeyPox”?

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recently identified two cases of monkeypox, also known as hMPXV, in children. According to the CDC, young children, children with eczema and other skin conditions, and children with immunocompromising conditions may be at increased risk of severe disease. 

Here is some background information from the Oregon Health Authority:
The virus originally got its common name “monkeypox” after the first recognized outbreak was in monkeys in a Danish laboratory in 1958. hMPXV is the human version of the monkeypox virus. According to the World Health Organization, the term “monkeypox” has been criticized by scientists as being discriminatory and stigmatizing. 

Is it similar to smallpox? It’s in the same group of viruses, but this isn’t smallpox. hMPXV is much harder to catch, and it is not as severe. There are two strains of this virus, and the main virus that is circulating now causes milder disease. Most people are recovering at home without any special treatment. 

What are the symptoms? Illness typically starts with fever, headache, and muscle aches. This is followed in one to three days by a rash, often on the face, spreading to the limbs. The rash starts with flat patches that then form large, firm bumps, which then fill with fluid or pus. These bumps then scab and fall off, usually within two to four weeks.

Who is most at risk for hMPXV in the current outbreak? The current outbreak in the U.S. has high rates of known cases among gay and bisexual men and transgender and non-binary people who have traveled to countries with hMPXV cases or have had contact with someone else with hMPXV. However, this virus is not limited by gender or sexuality and can spread to anyone, anywhere through close, personal, often skin-to-skin contact.

Should I vaccinate my children against it now? No. No vaccine is needed at this point. Vaccines would be used to protect people who have known exposure to someone ill with hMPXV infection. The vaccine works to prevent or decrease disease even after someone was exposed.

For the CDC’s guidance on hMPXV and children, visit https://www.cdc.gov/poxvirus/monkeypox/clinicians/pediatric.html 

A blonde woman, Dr. Velvet Cooley, counts rocks with a young boy in the playground. Dr. Cooley has researched the mental and physical health benefits to young children learning outdoors.

How to Make the Most of Summer for Early Learners   

After two years of COVID-19 disruptions, it may be more important than ever to spend this summer exploring the outdoors with young children. 

Chief Operating Officer of the Mid-Columbia Children’s Council Dr. Velvet Cooley shares some tips and insights on why spending time outdoors is proven to have a calming effect and enhance mental health, even for young children. 

Read more on our blog about the Tygh Valley Head Start outdoor program and the differences Dr. Cooley has seen in young learners since the pandemic.   

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

Many Oregon counties remain at “high risk”
for COVID-19 transmission
 

A total of 15 Oregon counties are in “high” transmission under the CDC’s COVID-19 community levels. During “high risk” periods in your community, child care programs are encouraged to take increased prevention strategies. When transmission is “high,” we recommend universal indoor masking for all individuals ages 2 and older and other precautions. Learn more on ELD’s “For Providers” page 

The CDC risk levels are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. 

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their Local Public Health Authority. Review ELD’s COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers.   

Banner image that says "Oregon Health Authority COVID-19 News Release

Changes coming to Oregon Health Authority’s child care outbreak reporting  

Starting Aug. 10, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will stop reporting recent cases, active outbreaks, and resolved outbreaks in workplaces, child care settings, and K-12 schools (tables 3-9) in the COVID-19 Biweekly Outbreak Report. OHA will continue to report active and resolved outbreaks in long-term care facilities, senior living communities, and congregate living settings (tables 1-2). 

These changes do not affect child care case and outbreak reporting to OHA. The agency will continue to work with local public health authorities to provide resources and support during outbreak responses, as appropriate. 

OHA shared in a newsletter it’s making the changes for several reasons. One reason is to align agency resources and staffing with the current stage of the pandemic and other public health needs. The biweekly outbreak reporting process is not fully automated and requires many hours of careful review to ensure accurate reporting. In addition, universal case investigation and contract tracing ended earlier this year, and OHA advised local public health authorities to focus data collection and response on outbreaks in high-risk settings, rather than in all settings. 

Preschool Promise grant applications DEADLINE EXTENTED TO Thursday, AUGUST 4  

Submit your grant applications for Preschool Promise (PSP) by the EXTENDED DEADLINE of Thursday, AUGUST 4 at 11:59 p.m. Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply. The Early Learning Division recently published frequently asked questions (FAQs) for applicants on the PSP webpage. These questions cover topics such as eligibility, evaluation, scoring, and more.  

For more information and resources, visit oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or contact  

PSPRFA@ode.oregon.gov  

A young childcare provider holds a giggling child above her head.

July Provider Information Sessions  

The slides and recordings for the English and Spanish sessions held July 13 and 14 are available for downloading below. In these sessions, ELD shares the latest on COVID-19, information about the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) Mission, Vision, and Values feedback, and agency and program updates.  


July 13, 2022  English Language Session
Slides in English


July 14, 2022 Spanish Language Session
Slides in Spanish

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

Many Oregon counties remain at “high risk” for COVID-19 transmission 

A total of 21 Oregon counties are in “high” transmission under the CDC’s COVID-19 community levels. During “high risk” periods in your community, child care programs are encouraged to take increased prevention strategies. When transmission is “high,” we recommend universal indoor masking for all individuals aged 2 and older and other precautions. Learn more on ELD’s “For Providers” page 

The CDC risk levels are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. 

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their Local Public Health Authority. Review our ELD’s COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers.   

A photo of a SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Test for Self-Testing

Expiration dates extended for many at-home COVID-19 tests 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has extended the expiration dates for many at-home COVID-19 tests.

Because these tests were quickly developed during the pandemic and authorized for emergency use by the FDA, many have short expiration periods (e.g., six months). 

As more time passes and test manufacturers can show that tests continue to work well beyond the initial expiration period, expiration dates are extended. 

If your at-home COVID-19 tests have expired, visit http://ow.ly/4tby50JQ7nN to check if the expiration date has been extended. 

A young childcare provider holds a giggling child above her head.

Register for ELD’s July Provider Information Sessions 

Join us for a session on July 13 or 14:  

  • Check in on COVID-19 
  • Learn about the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) Mission, Vision, and Values Engagement 
  • Review agency and program updates 

Wednesday, July 13 | 6 – 7 p.m. 
All provider types (Interpretation available in Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and ASL)
Zoom Link: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_NtyFidbEQEOM8BsNqSAYZA

Thursday, July 14 | 6 – 7 p.m. 
Spanish language. (All provider types)
Zoom Link: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_qyrfO3IQTX-S83SsOTFdcQ  

This is a virtual event. Registration is required to attend via Zoom. You may submit questions in advance on the registration form. You may also participate on ELD’s Facebook page live stream at the same time. ELD staff will monitor the Facebook comment section for questions. 

Note: Attendees using interpretation services (Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and ASL) should join the session via Zoom. 

Three school-aged kids play in a classroom setting together

Early Learning Council Approves New School-Aged Rules

On Wednesday, June 29, the Oregon Early Learning Council approved new rules that apply to licensed programs only serving school-age children.  

These rules were intentionally designed for school-age only programs to remove requirements that are duplicative or unnecessary in public school settings, and create an easier path to licensure. The rules were written in clear, plain language and align with national best practices.  

What does this mean for your program?  

If you are licensed, the rule effective date is Jan. 1, 2023. The Early Learning Division (ELD) will use this time to train licensing staff, create technical assistance tools, and make changes to our database. This will also give programs time to review the rules, identify changes, and attend an optional information session. 

For recorded school-age programs, you are not subject to licensing rules and regulations. However, the rule change may see more programs choosing to become licensed. Licensing provides a foundation of health and safety for children in your care and increases access to funding opportunities such as child care subsidies, food cost reimbursement, and grants available to licensed programs. 

You can find the rules below or with the other rules on the ELD’s Child Care Rules page. Providers can email questions to ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov.   

  • Rules for Certified School-Age Child Care Centers

Preschool Promise Applications Due by the EXTENDED DEADLINE AUGUST 4 at 11:59 p.m. 

Applications are open for the publicly funded program serving children who are at least three years of age but not older than five years of age, as determined by the date used to determine kindergarten eligibility. Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply.  

Learn more about becoming a Preschool Promise provider by visiting oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or by viewing the “Preschool Promise Webinar” recordings below.  

Preschool Promise Webinar, English: https://youtu.be/iFbG8H7IrbQ   

Preschool Promise Webinar, Spanish: https://youtu.be/P_UjhEQrYI8 

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

COVID-19 Risk Levels “High” for 24 Oregon Counties 

As of Thursday, June 30, a total of 24 Oregon counties are in “high” transmission under the CDC’s COVID-19 community levels. The counties are: Baker, Clackamas, Clatsop, Crook, Deschutes, Douglas, Hood River, Jackson, Jefferson, Josephine, Klamath, Lake, Lane, Lincoln, Malheur, Morrow, Multnomah, Sherman, Tillamook, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa, Wasco, and Washington. 

This signals a need for increased prevention strategies in child care. For these counties, we recommend the following: 

  • Implement universal indoor masking. All individuals (aged 2 and older) should wear a well-fitting face covering indoors regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases.  
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines. Information about vaccinations can be found at https://getvaccinated.oregon.gov.  
  • Be aware of COVID-19 symptoms, and individuals should be excluded if symptoms develop. If symptomatic, it is recommended they get tested for COVID-19. 
  • A child or staff member, regardless of vaccination status, should stay at home if they have primary symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, chills, shortness of breath, new cough, or new loss of taste or smell), or go home if symptoms develop while at a child care facility, and get tested.  

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their Local Public Health Authority. 

Review our COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers  

Join Oregon Health Authority on July 8 for “COVID-19 Vaccines for Children Under 5” Q&A 

Children 6 months and older are now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. Join Oregon Health Authority and OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital on Friday, July 8 at noon for a Facebook Live Q&A. This is an opportunity to get your vaccine questions answered by experts Dr. Dean Sidelinger, state health officer and state epidemiologist, and Dr. Eliza Hayes Bakken, assistant professor of pediatrics at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Clinic. Share this event with families and colleagues in your community.  

To attend this event, visit http://fb.me/e/2x0YgOtLo.  

an image of a digital air quality gage

Improving Air Quality in Child Care

With wildfire season under way in Oregon and COVID-19 risks ever-present, King County and Seattle’s public health agency put together an article with tips for child care and early learning programs to improve indoor air quality.  

The article refers to three basic steps to improve air quality:  

  • Routinely maintaining heating, cooling, and ventilation (HVAC) systems, and ensuring they are performing at the highest ventilation and filtration the system allows 
  • Using portable HEPA air cleaners 
  • Opening windows if possible  

You can find short video examples for child care settings in the article. Providers can also find technical assistance resources on the CDC website and Environmental Protection Agency website.     

Preschool Promise Applications Open Now

Looking to offer Preschool Promise for the first time or add more Preschool Promise slots to your program? Applications are now open for the publicly funded program serving children ages 3 to 4 years old from families with incomes at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. Approximately 3,756 children are currently enrolled in Preschool Promise programs in Oregon, and the state is adding more than 2,500 new preschool slots for eligible families in 2022.

Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply. Learn more about becoming a Preschool Promise provider by visiting oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or by attending a Preschool Promise webinar on Thursday, June 30. The deadline to apply is EXTENDED to Thursday, AUGUST 4 at 11:59 p.m. 

Children Six Months and Older Now Eligible for COVID-19 Vaccines

Pediatric Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines are now approved for use in Oregon for children ages six months and older. 

The two-dose Moderna vaccine series is available to children ages six months to under 6 years old. A three-dose Pfizer vaccination series is available to children ages 6 months to under 5 years old. 

The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup has confirmed that both vaccines are safe and effective for these age groups, following authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and recommendation from the CDC.  

The Oregon Health Authority is working with vaccine providers statewide to make doses available at health care provider offices, federally qualified health centers and special COVID-19 vaccine clinics. 

It’s recommended you call first and ask if your pediatrician or preferred clinic has the vaccine yet.  

State of Oregon increases child care reimbursement rates for providers 

Child care reimbursement rates have increased for providers caring for children of families who receive support with child care expenses through the Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS).  

ODHS pays providers for child care provided to families receiving child care assistance through the Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) programs.   

The new child care reimbursement rates were effective June 1, 2022 and are increasing due to the passage of House Bill 4005 of the 2022 Legislative Session. 

The average monthly reimbursement rates for full-time care are increasing by: 

  • 18% for family, friend and neighbor care 
  • Between 6 and 20% for child care centers  
  • Between 11 and 25% for licensed home-based care 

Actual child care reimbursement rates vary depending on provider type, child age and what community the provider is in. A complete list of reimbursement rates can be found on the ODHS website. 

Read more about the rate change in this joint news release.  

A young mother and her daughter have a conversation with a preschool teacher

DELC Mission, Vision, and Values: Attend a Community Conversation  

You may have already taken a survey about the draft mission, vision and values (MVV) for the new agency, the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). We have an additional opportunity for you to make your voice heard as we set the foundation for DELC.  

Register to attend a Community Conversations, an interactive engagement opportunity designed specifically to hear what you think about the draft MVV statements: Register now! 

Child Care Providers
Thursday, June 23 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Tuesday, June 28 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Spanish)
Wednesday, July 6 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Russian) 

Publicly Funded Program Grantees (Healthy Families Oregon, Relief Nurseries, Oregon Pre-Kindergarten, Preschool Promise, Baby Promise, etc.)
Monday, June 27 | 5 to 6 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 11 a.m. to noon 

Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) and Early Learning Hub Partners
Monday, June 27 | 11 a.m. to noon
Tuesday, June 28 | 11 a.m. to noon 

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

COVID-19 Risk Levels “High” for Three Oregon Counties  

Oregon’s Curry, Coos and Hood River counties are now categorized in “high” transmission according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated COVID-19 community levels. This signals a need for increased prevention strategies in child care. For these counties, we recommend the following: 

  • Implement universal indoor masking. All individuals (aged 2 and older) should wear a well-fitting face-covering indoors regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases. 
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines. Information about vaccinations can be found at Get Vaccinated Oregon
  • Be aware of COVID-19 symptoms, and individuals should be excluded if symptoms develop. If symptomatic, it is recommended they get tested for COVID-19.
  • A child or staff, regardless of vaccination status, must stay at home if they have primary symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, chills, shortness of breath, new cough, or new loss of taste or smell), or go home if symptoms develop while at child care, and get tested. 

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their local Public Health Authority. 

Find more best practices and guidelines in our COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations. 

CDC’s COVID-19 Community Levels help communities and individuals make decisions on what COVID-19 prevention strategies to use based on disease transmission rates in the community. The metrics are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. These levels factor in a combination of COVID-19 hospitalization rates, healthcare capacity, and cases.

If you have questions, please contact your licensing specialist or email ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov. 

Photo of two girls reading a book together

We want to hear from you!
Take the DELC Mission, Vision, and Values Feedback Survey
 

The Oregon Early Learning Division (ELD) wants your input in establishing the new agency, Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). Complete the survey and help create a mission, vision, and values that reflect, represent, and support Oregon communities.  

Click below to take the survey. Survey deadline: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 at 5 p.m.

A young mother and her daughter have a conversation with a preschool teacher

DELC Mission, Vision, and Values: Attend a Community Conversation  

You may have already taken a survey about the draft mission, vision and values (MVV) for the new agency, the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). We have an additional opportunity for you to make your voice heard as we set the foundation for DELC.  

Register to attend a Community Conversations, an interactive engagement opportunity designed specifically to hear what you think about the draft MVV statements.

Child Care Providers 
Thursday, June 23 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Tuesday, June 28 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Spanish)
Wednesday, July 6 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Russian) 

Publicly Funded Program Grantees
(Healthy Families Oregon, Relief Nurseries, Oregon Pre-Kindergarten, Preschool Promise, Baby Promise, etc.)  

Monday, June 27 | 5 to 6 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 11 a.m. to noon 

Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) and Early Learning Hub Partners 
Monday, June 27 | 11 a.m. to noon
Tuesday, June 28 | 11 a.m. to noon 

The LGBTQAI+ Flag with Happy Pride written over it

CELBRATING PRIDE MONTH!  

Celebrate the LGBTQ+ movement and people in your community! In June and throughout the year, take action to support the inclusivity and equality of Oregonians from the LGBTQ+ community. Zero to Three asked LGBTQ+ providers and families what makes them feel welcome. Here is what one parent shared:  

“It starts with a culture of inclusivity and acceptance. One of the things we love most about our daughter’s preschool is their genuine love and acceptance of our family that is felt from the program director down through the teachers. They show us this by sending home two plants on Mother’s Day, having lessons about different types of families, asking us what we prefer to be called, and just always showing us we are welcome, seen, and valued.” 

– Hannah, LGBTQ+ Parent 

Click below for more resources on how to support children, families, and staff. 

A red, black, and green banner that says Junteenth!

Happy Juneteenth! 

Although Juneteenth was declared a federal holiday in 2021, communities have been celebrating and remembering what happened on June 19, 1865 for many years. Juneteenth (also termed Jubilee Day, Freedom Day, or Emancipation Day) honors when the remaining 250,000 enslaved African Americans in Confederate states were legally declared free two years after Emancipation.  

Celebrate by attending Juneteenth events, virtual and in person, that are taking place across the state and nation. Recognize and honor this holiday with your early learning and care community. Explore the below resources and share with your network:  

A word cloud of the work "father" in multiple languages in the shape of a heart

We are celebrating fathers and father figures who make a

difference in our lives. ELD wishes you an early Happy Father’s Day!  

Logo: Preschool Promise

Preschool Promise Request for Applications 

The Early Learning Division (ELD) is working to finalize details for the release of a Preschool Promise Request for Applications (RFA) in the next few weeks. The RFA will be available to existing Preschool Promise grantees hoping to expand their programs and to new applicants who are looking to offer Preschool Promise in their programs. Watch for announcements on the ELD website, and get the latest updates on ELD’s Facebook or Twitter.

Photo of a group of fire extinguishers lined up.

Permanent Fire Safety Rules Adopted for Family Child Care  

During the past year, the Early Learning Division (ELD) worked with providers, early learning advocates, and other government organizations to strengthen fire safety rules in family care settings. The goal was to create cost-effective alternatives to requiring automatic sprinklers statewide.  

The Early Learning Council voted to adopt the permanent rules on May 25, 2022. In the coming months, ELD will provide technical assistance and coaching to help providers come into compliance with these rules.  

Some of the key rule changes for all Registered Family and Certified Family child care programs include: 

  • Install carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of the home and where children nap.
  • Create a plan to describe how exit paths will be illuminated during night care.
  • Mount or store fire extinguishers in a visible location and designate their location on an evacuation map. Fire extinguishers may be stored in a closet or cabinet, but there must be a sign indicating the extinguisher is inside. Fire extinguishers must be inspected monthly, and the inspection must be documented.  
  • Display a floor plan near the entrance, or in some other area of the home where it may be clearly viewed, with the following: exits, primary and secondary evacuation routes, and fire extinguishers. 
  • Fire drills must be practiced monthly at varying times of day. The Office of Child Care may request to observe an evacuation drill during an announced visit to allow providers to prepare children and families for the drill.
  • Keep a written record of each emergency evacuation drill with details stated in the rule.  

The final rule language is posted on ELD’s website. 

Child Care Nurse Hotline Ends June 30, 2022  

The Nurse Hotline service will end after June 30, 2022. The no-cost hotline was established by the Early Learning Division and Oregon Health & Science University Child Care in 2021 to assist providers with COVID-19. After June 30, please consider contacting your Local Public Health Authority or medical provider with COVID-19 health related questions. For other child care questions, email us at ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov.

How Can Oregon’s New Agency Serve You?
Take the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC):
Mission, Vision, and Values Survey
 

The Oregon Early Learning Division (ELD) wants your input in establishing the new agency, Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). By participating in the survey, your feedback will inform DELC and help create a mission, vision, and values that reflect, represent, and support Oregon communities. Your feedback in this short, 10-minute survey makes a difference for Oregon’s children, families, early learning programs, and communities.

Survey deadline: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 at 5 p.m.

After completing the survey, please provide your contact information to receive a summary of feedback gathered, to learn about next steps for the agency, and to provide additional comment. We will share the final version of DELC’s mission, vision, and values through email and on the website. 

Save the Date: ELD Provider Information Sessions:
July 13 and 14

Mark your calendar for the next in our series of provider information sessions: 

Wednesday, July 13 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Interpretation available)

Thursday, July 14 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish)

More details and a link to register coming soon. 

ELD’s Alyssa Chatterjee featured on
“The Early Link Podcast”
 

Oregon Early Learning System Director Alyssa Chatterjee talks about the creation of the new Department of Early Learning and Care, and what that means for the future of early childhood on the Children’s Institute’s “The Early Link Podcast.”  

Chatterjee also shared some of her personal experience working at a preschool and the evolution of the Early Learning Division over the years. You can listen to the podcast here. 

Photo of a group of fire extinguishers lined up.

Fire Safety for Certified Family and Registered Family

Providers are invited to share feedback on the Fire Safety Family Care rule until May 25, 2022 at 10 a.m. The Early Learning Division (ELD) has worked with providers, early learning advocates, and other government organizations to strengthen fire safety rules in family care settings during the past year. Specifically, the goal was to create permanent rules about cost-effective alternatives to automatic sprinklers statewide, a rule introduced in April 2021 by Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. 

Review the rules on our website. 

Image of crib bumpers

Crib Bumpers Prohibited in Child Care    

The Oregon State Legislature recently amended a statute to prohibit the use of crib bumper pads for children up to age 3. This change also prohibits a facility from having crib bumper pads on the premises, unless a medical professional has determined that using a crib bumper pad is medically necessary for a particular child who uses a crib in the licensed facility. 

The Office of Child Care will be revising the rules for Certified Centers, Certified Family and Registered Family child care facilities to align with this change in statute.  

Aide II Rule Change Proposed for Certified Child Care Centers 

After receiving feedback from providers, the Early Learning Division (ELD) will be moving to allow Aide II positions to have increased supervision in Certified Child Care Centers as a permanent rule change. ELD will recommend the Early Learning Council adopt the rule at its June 29, 2022 meeting.   

 ELD anticipates this change will assist providers with retaining staff and allow for greater flexibility within programs. 

OAR 300-0110(3) states, “An Aide II may support teachers in caring for children but may not be left alone with a group of children, except when:  (a) Supervising a group of children for no more than 60 minutes at a time, not to exceed more than 120 minutes of Aide II supervision per day, provided staff-to-child ratios are maintained, and there is another staff who is teacher, head teacher, or director qualified present at the facility. An Aide II may supervise an Aide I for no more than 60 minutes at a time.” 

If you have questions, please contact your licensing specialist or email  

ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov. 

baby formula on a blue background

New Resource for Families to Find Formula During the Infant Formula Shortage 

If you are struggling to find infant formula, this new fact sheet created by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services includes resources for locating safe formula.  

You should not water down formula, try to make formula at home, or use toddler formula to feed infants. Do not discard formula unless it is expired or is part of the recall. Check your formula’s lot code to see if it was affected by the recall. 

image: children's hands holding a flat wood cutout art of a human head with a heart where the brain would normally be

May is Mental Health Awareness Month  

Oregon’s early learning and care professionals play a critical role in supporting the mental health and well-being of children, families, and staff in their child care setting. In addition to sharing resources and creating a safe, welcoming child care setting and community, you can also support others by sharing your own experiences.  

In a recent Education Week article, David Shapiro, program manager at the Colorado School of Public Health’s Center for Health, Work, & Environment shared how it’s important to have “people be willing to share their stories, and I think this starts with leaders. [They can tell staff], ‘This pandemic has been challenging for my own mental health—here’s how it impacted me, and I’ve used my mental health benefits [to get help]’. The more we can build the story of mental health, the more we can spread awareness, the more we can reduce stigma.” 

Click here to read the article and click here to learn about “StigmaFree,” a campaign by the National Alliance on Mental Illness.  

Your mental health matters. Visit https://mhanational.org/teachers-protecting-your-mental-health for ways to help yourself and others in the field. 

Click below for additional resources and professional development opportunities.  

Photo of two girls reading a book together

Coming Soon: DELC Mission, Vision, and Values Feedback Survey 

The Early Learning Division (ELD) needs your help with establishing the new agency, Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). Watch for announcements about this opportunity to inform DELC and help create a mission, vision, and values that reflects, represents, and supports Oregon communities. 

Photo of blocks spelling out reminder

REMINDERS:  

Health, Safety, and Nutrition Requirement  

Certified Family and Certified Center staff are required to complete at least one hour of Health, Safety, and Nutrition (HSN) training before their facility’s license renewal. 

Registered Family providers and substitutes need to complete the annual HSN training before the end of each year of their license. 

Providers can look for training on the online calendar. 

DEADLINE EXTENDED FOR STATEWIDE SURVEY  
Center- and familybased owners, directors, teachers, assistants, and aides (whether currently employed or not) —share your experiences by completing this survey by May 31, 2022. If you are eligible, you will receive an email with a link to the survey. Look for an email from “The Preschool Development Grant” that you would have received around April 18. Questions? Didn’t get an email and think you should have? Contact Denise Ford. Email: denisef@oslc.org Call or text: 916-205-6851. 

September 15

ELD celebrates Hispanic Heritage Month 

September 15 to October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month, a special time when we recognize and honor the cultures, stories, history, and contributions of Hispanic communities. Here are some resources to help you celebrate, explore and increase your understanding this month and throughout the year.  

Next week, ELD’s Early Learning System Director Alyssa Chatterjee will visit a full immersion Spanish Preschool Promise program in Oregon. Follow ELD on Facebook for updates on her visit.  

NCPMI Logo

National Center for Pyramid Model Innovations (NCPMI): September Webinars  

Check out this month’s webinars as part of NCPMI’s Pyramid Model Webinar Series. These are recorded for viewing on your own schedule! 

Inclusion Benefits Everyone (Children, Families, Providers, and Directors)
A 3-part Within the Framework Series
September 16, September 23, and September 30 | 11 a.m. (PT) 

One Size Doesn’t Fit All: Using the Tiered Coaching Model for Practitioners
September 21 | Noon (PT) 

Visit https://challengingbehavior.org/training/webinars/upcoming-webinars/ for the complete webinar schedule and to register.  

Child Care Market Price Survey Coming Soon 

Oregon conducts a Market Price Survey (MPS) every two years to collect and capture the prices and supply of child care across the state. The 2022 survey will be conducted between October 1 and December 31 by your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) in partnership with The Research Institute at Western Oregon University, Oregon State University, and the Early Learning Division.   

As part of the MPS, you will be contacted to verify the rates you charge for your child care services and other information including your current child care capacity. Information is used for regional and state policymaking to ensure families have equal access to child care. In addition, the data collected during the MPS influences the Oregon Department of Human Services’ maximum subsidy rates for the Employment Related Day Care program and is the basis for tracking child care deserts over time. Rate information is not shared with parents and families and is combined with other facilities’ data for state decision-making purposes. 

Watch for more information from your CCR&R in early October! 

For more information, read the 2020 report: https://health.oregonstate.edu/sites/health.oregonstate.edu/files/early-learners/pdf/research/2020_oregon_child_care_market_price_study_-_main_report.pdf 

Piggy Bank Photo

Department of Early Learning and Care Agency Budget Request 

Every two years, state agencies are required to submit an Agency Request Budget (ARB) outlining their recommended investments for the Governor’s and Legislature’s consideration. The 2023-25 ARB is the first budget developed for the Department of Early Learning and Care (the agency the Early Learning Division will become July 1, 2023). On September 9, the 2023-25 ARB executive summary and full report were published on the ELD website.  

The DELC ARB focuses on three priorities: 1) centering families; 2) supporting the early learning workforce; and 3) sustainable operations. 

Visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/delc_abr for more information.  

Three school-aged kids play in a classroom setting together

Foundations for Learning – New required training 

On September 30, 2022, a new required training called “Foundations For Learning” will be available to early care and education (ECE) providers. This is a free, two-hour training on child development that will be available on the “Learning with OCCD” website in English, Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, and Traditional Chinese. This training will also be available in a self-study (paper version) on the OCCD website. 

All individuals currently employed in child care settings as of September 30, 2022 will need to complete the “Foundations for Learning” training before December 31, 2022. When individuals complete this training, they will: 

  • Fulfill this new training requirement 
  • Gain two hours toward the required hours in child development 

For more information and to find the training after Sept. 30, visit OCCD’s training page.  

Applications Open:
Central Background Registry (CBR)
Rulemaking Advisory Committee (RAC)
 

In June 2022, the Early Learning Council (ELC) adopted temporary rules in response to HB 4005 and SB 1547. These bills and the statutesexpanded background check requirements for those working and/or living in recorded preschool, recorded school-age, and Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) programs. All staff, volunteers, household members, and those who may have unsupervised contact with children must be enrolled in the CBR.   

The CBR RAC is a group of community members who will provide feedback on the proposed rule language and share input on the fiscal and equity effects of CBR enrollment requirements for adults working in these programs.   

If interested in participating, please complete the application and submit it by October 7, 2022. RAC meetings will be in late October and early November.    

A finger with a string tied around it as a reminder.

Reminders 

Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program: Provide Feedback on the Proposed Rules
We want to hear from you!  

  • Complete the feedback form on the draft rules by September 23, 2022 at 5 p.m.   
  • Register to present verbal testimony at the public hearing on September 20 at 5:30 p.m.   

To provide feedback and learn more about these rules and the rulemaking process, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/sepp.   

September Provider Information Sessions
The recording for the session (English language) on Wednesday, September 14 is now available: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pKLyUSOvRBU&t=1s. The next session (Spanish language) will be 6 to 7 p.m. tonight, September 15: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_KaEItRdKRmK2UbLFvSqcfQ   

In these sessions, ELD shares information about the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC), updates on programs and opportunities, and the vision for the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) website.  

September 1

Register to attend ELD’s September
Provider Information Sessions 
 

Join us in September to:  

  • Learn about Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC)
  • Share your vision for the DELC website
  • Agency Reminders

Wednesday, September 14 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Interpretation available)
ZOOM: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_CKuvc9iGSq2Aj_D98qrjaQ

Thursday, September 15 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish)
ZOOM: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_KaEItRdKRmK2UbLFvSqcfQ

This is a virtual event. Registration is required to attend via Zoom. You may submit questions in advance on the registration form. You may also participate on ELD’s Facebook page live stream at the same time. ELD staff will monitor the Facebook comment section for questions.  

Note: Attendees using interpretation services (Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and ASL) should join the session via Zoom.  

Preschool Promise RFA:
Notice of Intent to Award

Thank you to all who applied for the Preschool Promise grant! We are deeply grateful for your passion and interest in serving children and families in Oregon. The Preschool Promise Notice of Intent to Award list was published on Tuesday, August 30 on the ELD website: https://oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise.  

Applicants who are included on this list will receive an email confirming ELD’s intent to award their program a Preschool Promise grant. If your program is not listed in the Notice of Intent to Award, we encourage you to continue working with your local Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) Agency, or other community partner, to reflect on the application process and how to benefit from RFA opportunities in the future.   

If you have any questions, email DELC.Procurement@ode.oregon.gov. 

Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program:
Provide Feedback on the Proposed Rules

On September 1, the Early Learning Division released a draft of the Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program Rules for public comment. These proposed rules will help the agency set up the new program and guide future design and requirements.  

We want to hear from you! Provide feedback on the draft rules:  

  • Complete the Feedback Form on the draft rules by September 23, 2022 at 5 p.m.  
  • Register to present verbal testimony at the public hearing on September 20 at 5:30 p.m.  

To provide feedback and learn more about these rules and the rulemaking process, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/sepp.  

Questions? Contact Remy Watts, ELD Rules Coordinator: remy.watts@ode.oregon.gov | 971-701-1535. 

August 17

Child Care Substitutes Provider Advisory Committee – Applications Open

Providers are invited to share their voices and help build a substitutes program for child care in Oregon. Providers of all types can apply now to be considered for the Child Care Substitutes Provider Advisory Committee. Committee members will be asked to share feedback on challenges and priorities for providers in creating a successful substitutes program. 

Virtual committee meetings will be each quarter starting September 2022 through June 2023. Providers selected to participate can earn subsidized substitute hours (four hours per meeting). The Early Learning Division (ELD) is funding the program in partnership with Western Oregon University, the developer of the Child Care Substitutes Program.  

The deadline to apply is August 31, 2022. 

Oregon Inclusive Partners Logo

Inclusive Partners Update 

On July 1, 2022, the Inclusive Partners program transitioned from the Oregon Department of Human Services to the Early Learning Division. This was the first of several transitions for early learning and care programs that will be consolidated under the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) starting July 2023. 

If you are not familiar with Inclusive Partners, it is a five-member team that provides inclusive resources, technical assistance, and subsidies for child care providers and families of children with higher needs in Oregon. The program works with child care providers caring for children who need additional accommodations to support inclusive care. The program offers supports for children and youths from birth through age 17. Families, child care providers, and other partners can request assistance at no cost. 

Learn more about Inclusive Partners and its support options by visiting InclusivePartners.org. 

Child Care Update Newsletter – Reader Survey Results 

Earlier this summer, we invited readers of Child Care Updates to take a survey to help improve the newsletter’s usefulness.  

Overall, most respondents thought the every-other-week frequency was just right. Most said they are receiving enough information on child care rules (87%), COVID-19 safety information (64%), and general agency news (65%). Other topics captured in the survey asked if respondents are receiving enough information on opportunities to engage with ELD (58%) and if they are receiving enough information on the implementation of the new Department of Early Learning and Care (60%).  

Based on the survey results, ELD will look to offer more information about training opportunities and mental health supports. We will also continue to share timely updates about the new Department of Early Learning and Care, along with safety, health, and rules affecting child care.    

Thank you to all who shared feedback and please sign up to subscribe if you don’t already receive the email updates!   

SOME THOUGHTS SHARED BY SURVEY PARTICIPANTS:

“I really appreciate getting the updates delivered to my mailbox. It’s been a great support while navigating my preschool through COVID! Thank you!”

“I’d like to see more mental health topics for providers and more grant info.”

“I like that we can read in our native language. Thanks!” (Spanish speaking respondent) 

Preschool Promise Request for Applications (RFA) Update  

The Preschool Promise Request for Applications (RFA) closed on Thursday, Aug. 4. We are grateful to all applicants for their interest in Preschool Promise and for their service to children and families in Oregon. We received a total of 212 applications requesting 3,137 slots at 267 sites.   

The review process is in progress and “intent to award” notices will be distributed by the end of August. Evaluation committees will use the evaluation criteria outlined in the RFA to score each application. If you have questions about your application, please email PSPRFA@ode.oregon.gov.

For more information and Frequently Asked Questions, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise.    

Save the Date: ELD Provider Information Sessions

Mark your calendar for the next events in our series of provider information sessions: 

Wednesday, September 14 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Interpretation available) 

Thursday, September 15 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish) 

More details and a link to register coming soon. 

Two Recall Notices: First Choice Glass Baby Bottles and 4moms MamaRoo and RockaRoo Infant Swings and Rockers

The U.S. Product Consumer Safety Commission issued two recalls in recent weeks. One notice is for First Choice Glass Baby Bottles, which contain levels of lead that exceed the federal lead content ban. Lead is toxic if ingested by young children and can cause adverse health issues. 

The bottles were sold exclusively on Amazon. The product was manufactured for the UK market only and not intended for sale in the U.S.  

The other product recalled is the 4moms MamaRoo Baby Swing, versions 1.0 through 4.0 and RockaRoo Baby Rockers. When the swing or rocker is not in use, the restraint straps can dangle below the seat and crawling infants can become entangled in the straps, posing a strangulation hazard. The recall includes models that use a 3-point harness. The 5-point harness model is not included in this recall. 

Early Learning Division Employee Identification Reminder 

We’d like to remind providers that they can ask any visitors to their facilities who identify themselves as an Early Learning Division employee to show an agency badge and business card before allowing entrance. Providers may also ask for their supervisor’s name and contact information. 

August 2

Preschool Promise Grant Application
Deadline is THIS THURSDAY, Aug. 4
 

Submit or complete your grant applications for Preschool Promise (PSP) by Thursday, Aug. 4 at 11:59 p.m. Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply. Questions? Visit the PSP webpage for frequently asked questions and answers https://oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or contact PSPRFA@ode.oregon.gov.  

Oregon Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program

In 2022, Oregon Legislature passed HB 5202 and approved funding to establish the Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program. Recently, Katrina Miller (ELD’s infant and early childhood mental health specialist) provided a short update at the July Provider Information Sessions. From April to July 2022, a group of community members formed a Rulemaking Advisory Committee and drafted the new rules for this program.  

For more information on the Early Childhood Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program, including a background, timeline, and resources, visit https://oregonearlylearning.com/sepp. Watch for updates as this program continues to develop.   

What if instead of calling it…

The “Suspension and Expulsion Prevention Program”

We called it…

The “making sure ECE providers have the training, coaching, consultation, and other supports they need to be able to support every child” program?

~ Katrina Miller
ELD Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Specialist

Microscopic photo of the hMPXV or “MonkeyPox” virus

 What is hMPXV a.k.a “MonkeyPox”?

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recently identified two cases of monkeypox, also known as hMPXV, in children. According to the CDC, young children, children with eczema and other skin conditions, and children with immunocompromising conditions may be at increased risk of severe disease. 

Here is some background information from the Oregon Health Authority:
The virus originally got its common name “monkeypox” after the first recognized outbreak was in monkeys in a Danish laboratory in 1958. hMPXV is the human version of the monkeypox virus. According to the World Health Organization, the term “monkeypox” has been criticized by scientists as being discriminatory and stigmatizing. 

Is it similar to smallpox? It’s in the same group of viruses, but this isn’t smallpox. hMPXV is much harder to catch, and it is not as severe. There are two strains of this virus, and the main virus that is circulating now causes milder disease. Most people are recovering at home without any special treatment. 

What are the symptoms? Illness typically starts with fever, headache, and muscle aches. This is followed in one to three days by a rash, often on the face, spreading to the limbs. The rash starts with flat patches that then form large, firm bumps, which then fill with fluid or pus. These bumps then scab and fall off, usually within two to four weeks.

Who is most at risk for hMPXV in the current outbreak? The current outbreak in the U.S. has high rates of known cases among gay and bisexual men and transgender and non-binary people who have traveled to countries with hMPXV cases or have had contact with someone else with hMPXV. However, this virus is not limited by gender or sexuality and can spread to anyone, anywhere through close, personal, often skin-to-skin contact.

Should I vaccinate my children against it now? No. No vaccine is needed at this point. Vaccines would be used to protect people who have known exposure to someone ill with hMPXV infection. The vaccine works to prevent or decrease disease even after someone was exposed.

For the CDC’s guidance on hMPXV and children, visit https://www.cdc.gov/poxvirus/monkeypox/clinicians/pediatric.html 

A blonde woman, Dr. Velvet Cooley, counts rocks with a young boy in the playground. Dr. Cooley has researched the mental and physical health benefits to young children learning outdoors.

How to Make the Most of Summer for Early Learners   

After two years of COVID-19 disruptions, it may be more important than ever to spend this summer exploring the outdoors with young children. 

Chief Operating Officer of the Mid-Columbia Children’s Council Dr. Velvet Cooley shares some tips and insights on why spending time outdoors is proven to have a calming effect and enhance mental health, even for young children. 

Read more on our blog about the Tygh Valley Head Start outdoor program and the differences Dr. Cooley has seen in young learners since the pandemic.   

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

Many Oregon counties remain at “high risk”
for COVID-19 transmission
 

A total of 15 Oregon counties are in “high” transmission under the CDC’s COVID-19 community levels. During “high risk” periods in your community, child care programs are encouraged to take increased prevention strategies. When transmission is “high,” we recommend universal indoor masking for all individuals ages 2 and older and other precautions. Learn more on ELD’s “For Providers” page 

The CDC risk levels are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. 

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their Local Public Health Authority. Review ELD’s COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers.   

Banner image that says "Oregon Health Authority COVID-19 News Release

Changes coming to Oregon Health Authority’s child care outbreak reporting  

Starting Aug. 10, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) will stop reporting recent cases, active outbreaks, and resolved outbreaks in workplaces, child care settings, and K-12 schools (tables 3-9) in the COVID-19 Biweekly Outbreak Report. OHA will continue to report active and resolved outbreaks in long-term care facilities, senior living communities, and congregate living settings (tables 1-2). 

These changes do not affect child care case and outbreak reporting to OHA. The agency will continue to work with local public health authorities to provide resources and support during outbreak responses, as appropriate. 

OHA shared in a newsletter it’s making the changes for several reasons. One reason is to align agency resources and staffing with the current stage of the pandemic and other public health needs. The biweekly outbreak reporting process is not fully automated and requires many hours of careful review to ensure accurate reporting. In addition, universal case investigation and contract tracing ended earlier this year, and OHA advised local public health authorities to focus data collection and response on outbreaks in high-risk settings, rather than in all settings. 

July 19

Preschool Promise grant applications DEADLINE EXTENTED TO Thursday, AUGUST 4  

Submit your grant applications for Preschool Promise (PSP) by the EXTENDED DEADLINE of Thursday, AUGUST 4 at 11:59 p.m. Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply. The Early Learning Division recently published frequently asked questions (FAQs) for applicants on the PSP webpage. These questions cover topics such as eligibility, evaluation, scoring, and more.  

For more information and resources, visit oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or contact  

PSPRFA@ode.oregon.gov  

A young childcare provider holds a giggling child above her head.

July Provider Information Sessions  

The slides and recordings for the English and Spanish sessions held July 13 and 14 are available for downloading below. In these sessions, ELD shares the latest on COVID-19, information about the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) Mission, Vision, and Values feedback, and agency and program updates.  


July 13, 2022  English Language Session
Slides in English


July 14, 2022 Spanish Language Session
Slides in Spanish

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

Many Oregon counties remain at “high risk” for COVID-19 transmission 

A total of 21 Oregon counties are in “high” transmission under the CDC’s COVID-19 community levels. During “high risk” periods in your community, child care programs are encouraged to take increased prevention strategies. When transmission is “high,” we recommend universal indoor masking for all individuals aged 2 and older and other precautions. Learn more on ELD’s “For Providers” page 

The CDC risk levels are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. 

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their Local Public Health Authority. Review our ELD’s COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers.   

A photo of a SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Test for Self-Testing

Expiration dates extended for many at-home COVID-19 tests 

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has extended the expiration dates for many at-home COVID-19 tests.

Because these tests were quickly developed during the pandemic and authorized for emergency use by the FDA, many have short expiration periods (e.g., six months). 

As more time passes and test manufacturers can show that tests continue to work well beyond the initial expiration period, expiration dates are extended. 

If your at-home COVID-19 tests have expired, visit http://ow.ly/4tby50JQ7nN to check if the expiration date has been extended. 

July 6
A young childcare provider holds a giggling child above her head.

Register for ELD’s July Provider Information Sessions 

Join us for a session on July 13 or 14:  

  • Check in on COVID-19 
  • Learn about the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC) Mission, Vision, and Values Engagement 
  • Review agency and program updates 

Wednesday, July 13 | 6 – 7 p.m. 
All provider types (Interpretation available in Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and ASL)
Zoom Link: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_NtyFidbEQEOM8BsNqSAYZA

Thursday, July 14 | 6 – 7 p.m. 
Spanish language. (All provider types)
Zoom Link: https://www.zoomgov.com/webinar/register/WN_qyrfO3IQTX-S83SsOTFdcQ  

This is a virtual event. Registration is required to attend via Zoom. You may submit questions in advance on the registration form. You may also participate on ELD’s Facebook page live stream at the same time. ELD staff will monitor the Facebook comment section for questions. 

Note: Attendees using interpretation services (Spanish, Russian, Vietnamese, Chinese, and ASL) should join the session via Zoom. 

Three school-aged kids play in a classroom setting together

Early Learning Council Approves New School-Aged Rules

On Wednesday, June 29, the Oregon Early Learning Council approved new rules that apply to licensed programs only serving school-age children.  

These rules were intentionally designed for school-age only programs to remove requirements that are duplicative or unnecessary in public school settings, and create an easier path to licensure. The rules were written in clear, plain language and align with national best practices.  

What does this mean for your program?  

If you are licensed, the rule effective date is Jan. 1, 2023. The Early Learning Division (ELD) will use this time to train licensing staff, create technical assistance tools, and make changes to our database. This will also give programs time to review the rules, identify changes, and attend an optional information session. 

For recorded school-age programs, you are not subject to licensing rules and regulations. However, the rule change may see more programs choosing to become licensed. Licensing provides a foundation of health and safety for children in your care and increases access to funding opportunities such as child care subsidies, food cost reimbursement, and grants available to licensed programs. 

You can find the rules below or with the other rules on the ELD’s Child Care Rules page. Providers can email questions to ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov.   

  • Rules for Certified School-Age Child Care Centers

Preschool Promise Applications Due by the EXTENDED DEADLINE AUGUST 4 at 11:59 p.m. 

Applications are open for the publicly funded program serving children who are at least three years of age but not older than five years of age, as determined by the date used to determine kindergarten eligibility. Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply.  

Learn more about becoming a Preschool Promise provider by visiting oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or by viewing the “Preschool Promise Webinar” recordings below.  

Preschool Promise Webinar, English: https://youtu.be/iFbG8H7IrbQ   

Preschool Promise Webinar, Spanish: https://youtu.be/P_UjhEQrYI8 

Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

COVID-19 Risk Levels “High” for 24 Oregon Counties 

As of Thursday, June 30, a total of 24 Oregon counties are in “high” transmission under the CDC’s COVID-19 community levels. The counties are: Baker, Clackamas, Clatsop, Crook, Deschutes, Douglas, Hood River, Jackson, Jefferson, Josephine, Klamath, Lake, Lane, Lincoln, Malheur, Morrow, Multnomah, Sherman, Tillamook, Umatilla, Union, Wallowa, Wasco, and Washington. 

This signals a need for increased prevention strategies in child care. For these counties, we recommend the following: 

  • Implement universal indoor masking. All individuals (aged 2 and older) should wear a well-fitting face covering indoors regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases.  
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines. Information about vaccinations can be found at https://getvaccinated.oregon.gov.  
  • Be aware of COVID-19 symptoms, and individuals should be excluded if symptoms develop. If symptomatic, it is recommended they get tested for COVID-19. 
  • A child or staff member, regardless of vaccination status, should stay at home if they have primary symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, chills, shortness of breath, new cough, or new loss of taste or smell), or go home if symptoms develop while at a child care facility, and get tested.  

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their Local Public Health Authority. 

Review our COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations: https://oregonearlylearning.com/COVID-19-Resources/For-Providers  

Join Oregon Health Authority on July 8 for “COVID-19 Vaccines for Children Under 5” Q&A 

Children 6 months and older are now eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine. Join Oregon Health Authority and OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Hospital on Friday, July 8 at noon for a Facebook Live Q&A. This is an opportunity to get your vaccine questions answered by experts Dr. Dean Sidelinger, state health officer and state epidemiologist, and Dr. Eliza Hayes Bakken, assistant professor of pediatrics at OHSU Doernbecher Children’s Clinic. Share this event with families and colleagues in your community.  

To attend this event, visit http://fb.me/e/2x0YgOtLo.  

an image of a digital air quality gage

Improving Air Quality in Child Care

With wildfire season under way in Oregon and COVID-19 risks ever-present, King County and Seattle’s public health agency put together an article with tips for child care and early learning programs to improve indoor air quality.  

The article refers to three basic steps to improve air quality:  

  • Routinely maintaining heating, cooling, and ventilation (HVAC) systems, and ensuring they are performing at the highest ventilation and filtration the system allows 
  • Using portable HEPA air cleaners 
  • Opening windows if possible  

You can find short video examples for child care settings in the article. Providers can also find technical assistance resources on the CDC website and Environmental Protection Agency website.     

June 22

Preschool Promise Applications Open Now

Looking to offer Preschool Promise for the first time or add more Preschool Promise slots to your program? Applications are now open for the publicly funded program serving children ages 3 to 4 years old from families with incomes at or below 200 percent of the Federal Poverty Level. Approximately 3,756 children are currently enrolled in Preschool Promise programs in Oregon, and the state is adding more than 2,500 new preschool slots for eligible families in 2022.

Only new applicants or current Preschool Promise providers interested in adding slots need to apply. Learn more about becoming a Preschool Promise provider by visiting oregonearlylearning.com/preschool-promise or by attending a Preschool Promise webinar on Thursday, June 30. The deadline to apply is EXTENDED to Thursday, AUGUST 4 at 11:59 p.m. 

Children Six Months and Older Now Eligible for COVID-19 Vaccines

Pediatric Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines are now approved for use in Oregon for children ages six months and older. 

The two-dose Moderna vaccine series is available to children ages six months to under 6 years old. A three-dose Pfizer vaccination series is available to children ages 6 months to under 5 years old. 

The Western States Scientific Safety Review Workgroup has confirmed that both vaccines are safe and effective for these age groups, following authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration and recommendation from the CDC.  

The Oregon Health Authority is working with vaccine providers statewide to make doses available at health care provider offices, federally qualified health centers and special COVID-19 vaccine clinics. 

It’s recommended you call first and ask if your pediatrician or preferred clinic has the vaccine yet.  

State of Oregon increases child care reimbursement rates for providers 

Child care reimbursement rates have increased for providers caring for children of families who receive support with child care expenses through the Oregon Department of Human Services (ODHS).  

ODHS pays providers for child care provided to families receiving child care assistance through the Employment Related Day Care (ERDC) and the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) programs.   

The new child care reimbursement rates were effective June 1, 2022 and are increasing due to the passage of House Bill 4005 of the 2022 Legislative Session. 

The average monthly reimbursement rates for full-time care are increasing by: 

  • 18% for family, friend and neighbor care 
  • Between 6 and 20% for child care centers  
  • Between 11 and 25% for licensed home-based care 

Actual child care reimbursement rates vary depending on provider type, child age and what community the provider is in. A complete list of reimbursement rates can be found on the ODHS website. 

Read more about the rate change in this joint news release.  

A young mother and her daughter have a conversation with a preschool teacher

DELC Mission, Vision, and Values: Attend a Community Conversation  

You may have already taken a survey about the draft mission, vision and values (MVV) for the new agency, the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). We have an additional opportunity for you to make your voice heard as we set the foundation for DELC.  

Register to attend a Community Conversations, an interactive engagement opportunity designed specifically to hear what you think about the draft MVV statements: Register now! 

Child Care Providers
Thursday, June 23 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Tuesday, June 28 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Spanish)
Wednesday, July 6 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Russian) 

Publicly Funded Program Grantees (Healthy Families Oregon, Relief Nurseries, Oregon Pre-Kindergarten, Preschool Promise, Baby Promise, etc.)
Monday, June 27 | 5 to 6 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 11 a.m. to noon 

Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) and Early Learning Hub Partners
Monday, June 27 | 11 a.m. to noon
Tuesday, June 28 | 11 a.m. to noon 

June 16
Computer generated image of the COVID19 Virus

COVID-19 Risk Levels “High” for Three Oregon Counties  

Oregon’s Curry, Coos and Hood River counties are now categorized in “high” transmission according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) updated COVID-19 community levels. This signals a need for increased prevention strategies in child care. For these counties, we recommend the following: 

  • Implement universal indoor masking. All individuals (aged 2 and older) should wear a well-fitting face-covering indoors regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory diseases. 
  • Stay up to date with COVID-19 vaccines. Information about vaccinations can be found at Get Vaccinated Oregon
  • Be aware of COVID-19 symptoms, and individuals should be excluded if symptoms develop. If symptomatic, it is recommended they get tested for COVID-19.
  • A child or staff, regardless of vaccination status, must stay at home if they have primary symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, chills, shortness of breath, new cough, or new loss of taste or smell), or go home if symptoms develop while at child care, and get tested. 

Programs are required to report COVID-19 cases to their local Public Health Authority. 

Find more best practices and guidelines in our COVID-19 Requirements and Recommendations. 

CDC’s COVID-19 Community Levels help communities and individuals make decisions on what COVID-19 prevention strategies to use based on disease transmission rates in the community. The metrics are updated weekly. You can refer to the CDC map for the latest information. These levels factor in a combination of COVID-19 hospitalization rates, healthcare capacity, and cases.

If you have questions, please contact your licensing specialist or email ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov. 

Photo of two girls reading a book together

We want to hear from you!
Take the DELC Mission, Vision, and Values Feedback Survey
 

The Oregon Early Learning Division (ELD) wants your input in establishing the new agency, Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). Complete the survey and help create a mission, vision, and values that reflect, represent, and support Oregon communities.  

Click below to take the survey. Survey deadline: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 at 5 p.m.

A young mother and her daughter have a conversation with a preschool teacher

DELC Mission, Vision, and Values: Attend a Community Conversation  

You may have already taken a survey about the draft mission, vision and values (MVV) for the new agency, the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). We have an additional opportunity for you to make your voice heard as we set the foundation for DELC.  

Register to attend a Community Conversations, an interactive engagement opportunity designed specifically to hear what you think about the draft MVV statements.

Child Care Providers 
Thursday, June 23 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Tuesday, June 28 | 6 to 7 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Spanish)
Wednesday, July 6 | 6 to 7 p.m.
(Russian) 

Publicly Funded Program Grantees
(Healthy Families Oregon, Relief Nurseries, Oregon Pre-Kindergarten, Preschool Promise, Baby Promise, etc.)  

Monday, June 27 | 5 to 6 p.m.
Wednesday, June 29 11 a.m. to noon 

Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) and Early Learning Hub Partners 
Monday, June 27 | 11 a.m. to noon
Tuesday, June 28 | 11 a.m. to noon 

The LGBTQAI+ Flag with Happy Pride written over it

CELBRATING PRIDE MONTH!  

Celebrate the LGBTQ+ movement and people in your community! In June and throughout the year, take action to support the inclusivity and equality of Oregonians from the LGBTQ+ community. Zero to Three asked LGBTQ+ providers and families what makes them feel welcome. Here is what one parent shared:  

“It starts with a culture of inclusivity and acceptance. One of the things we love most about our daughter’s preschool is their genuine love and acceptance of our family that is felt from the program director down through the teachers. They show us this by sending home two plants on Mother’s Day, having lessons about different types of families, asking us what we prefer to be called, and just always showing us we are welcome, seen, and valued.” 

– Hannah, LGBTQ+ Parent 

Click below for more resources on how to support children, families, and staff. 

A red, black, and green banner that says Junteenth!

Happy Juneteenth! 

Although Juneteenth was declared a federal holiday in 2021, communities have been celebrating and remembering what happened on June 19, 1865 for many years. Juneteenth (also termed Jubilee Day, Freedom Day, or Emancipation Day) honors when the remaining 250,000 enslaved African Americans in Confederate states were legally declared free two years after Emancipation.  

Celebrate by attending Juneteenth events, virtual and in person, that are taking place across the state and nation. Recognize and honor this holiday with your early learning and care community. Explore the below resources and share with your network:  

A word cloud of the work "father" in multiple languages in the shape of a heart

We are celebrating fathers and father figures who make a

difference in our lives. ELD wishes you an early Happy Father’s Day!  

June 2
Logo: Preschool Promise

Preschool Promise Request for Applications 

The Early Learning Division (ELD) is working to finalize details for the release of a Preschool Promise Request for Applications (RFA) in the next few weeks. The RFA will be available to existing Preschool Promise grantees hoping to expand their programs and to new applicants who are looking to offer Preschool Promise in their programs. Watch for announcements on the ELD website, and get the latest updates on ELD’s Facebook or Twitter.

Photo of a group of fire extinguishers lined up.

Permanent Fire Safety Rules Adopted for Family Child Care  

During the past year, the Early Learning Division (ELD) worked with providers, early learning advocates, and other government organizations to strengthen fire safety rules in family care settings. The goal was to create cost-effective alternatives to requiring automatic sprinklers statewide.  

The Early Learning Council voted to adopt the permanent rules on May 25, 2022. In the coming months, ELD will provide technical assistance and coaching to help providers come into compliance with these rules.  

Some of the key rule changes for all Registered Family and Certified Family child care programs include: 

  • Install carbon monoxide detectors on each floor of the home and where children nap.
  • Create a plan to describe how exit paths will be illuminated during night care.
  • Mount or store fire extinguishers in a visible location and designate their location on an evacuation map. Fire extinguishers may be stored in a closet or cabinet, but there must be a sign indicating the extinguisher is inside. Fire extinguishers must be inspected monthly, and the inspection must be documented.  
  • Display a floor plan near the entrance, or in some other area of the home where it may be clearly viewed, with the following: exits, primary and secondary evacuation routes, and fire extinguishers. 
  • Fire drills must be practiced monthly at varying times of day. The Office of Child Care may request to observe an evacuation drill during an announced visit to allow providers to prepare children and families for the drill.
  • Keep a written record of each emergency evacuation drill with details stated in the rule.  

The final rule language is posted on ELD’s website. 

Child Care Nurse Hotline Ends June 30, 2022  

The Nurse Hotline service will end after June 30, 2022. The no-cost hotline was established by the Early Learning Division and Oregon Health & Science University Child Care in 2021 to assist providers with COVID-19. After June 30, please consider contacting your Local Public Health Authority or medical provider with COVID-19 health related questions. For other child care questions, email us at ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov.

How Can Oregon’s New Agency Serve You?
Take the Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC):
Mission, Vision, and Values Survey
 

The Oregon Early Learning Division (ELD) wants your input in establishing the new agency, Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). By participating in the survey, your feedback will inform DELC and help create a mission, vision, and values that reflect, represent, and support Oregon communities. Your feedback in this short, 10-minute survey makes a difference for Oregon’s children, families, early learning programs, and communities.

Survey deadline: Tuesday, June 21, 2022 at 5 p.m.

After completing the survey, please provide your contact information to receive a summary of feedback gathered, to learn about next steps for the agency, and to provide additional comment. We will share the final version of DELC’s mission, vision, and values through email and on the website. 

Save the Date: ELD Provider Information Sessions:
July 13 and 14

Mark your calendar for the next in our series of provider information sessions: 

Wednesday, July 13 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Interpretation available)

Thursday, July 14 | 6 to 7 p.m.
All provider types. (Conducted in Spanish)

More details and a link to register coming soon. 

ELD’s Alyssa Chatterjee featured on
“The Early Link Podcast”
 

Oregon Early Learning System Director Alyssa Chatterjee talks about the creation of the new Department of Early Learning and Care, and what that means for the future of early childhood on the Children’s Institute’s “The Early Link Podcast.”  

Chatterjee also shared some of her personal experience working at a preschool and the evolution of the Early Learning Division over the years. You can listen to the podcast here. 

May 17
Photo of a group of fire extinguishers lined up.

Fire Safety for Certified Family and Registered Family

Providers are invited to share feedback on the Fire Safety Family Care rule until May 25, 2022 at 10 a.m. The Early Learning Division (ELD) has worked with providers, early learning advocates, and other government organizations to strengthen fire safety rules in family care settings during the past year. Specifically, the goal was to create permanent rules about cost-effective alternatives to automatic sprinklers statewide, a rule introduced in April 2021 by Oregon Department of Consumer and Business Services. 

Review the rules on our website. 

Image of crib bumpers

Crib Bumpers Prohibited in Child Care    

The Oregon State Legislature recently amended a statute to prohibit the use of crib bumper pads for children up to age 3. This change also prohibits a facility from having crib bumper pads on the premises, unless a medical professional has determined that using a crib bumper pad is medically necessary for a particular child who uses a crib in the licensed facility. 

The Office of Child Care will be revising the rules for Certified Centers, Certified Family and Registered Family child care facilities to align with this change in statute.  

Aide II Rule Change Proposed for Certified Child Care Centers 

After receiving feedback from providers, the Early Learning Division (ELD) will be moving to allow Aide II positions to have increased supervision in Certified Child Care Centers as a permanent rule change. ELD will recommend the Early Learning Council adopt the rule at its June 29, 2022 meeting.   

 ELD anticipates this change will assist providers with retaining staff and allow for greater flexibility within programs. 

OAR 300-0110(3) states, “An Aide II may support teachers in caring for children but may not be left alone with a group of children, except when:  (a) Supervising a group of children for no more than 60 minutes at a time, not to exceed more than 120 minutes of Aide II supervision per day, provided staff-to-child ratios are maintained, and there is another staff who is teacher, head teacher, or director qualified present at the facility. An Aide II may supervise an Aide I for no more than 60 minutes at a time.” 

If you have questions, please contact your licensing specialist or email  

ProviderContact@ode.oregon.gov. 

baby formula on a blue background

New Resource for Families to Find Formula During the Infant Formula Shortage 

If you are struggling to find infant formula, this new fact sheet created by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services includes resources for locating safe formula.  

You should not water down formula, try to make formula at home, or use toddler formula to feed infants. Do not discard formula unless it is expired or is part of the recall. Check your formula’s lot code to see if it was affected by the recall. 

image: children's hands holding a flat wood cutout art of a human head with a heart where the brain would normally be

May is Mental Health Awareness Month  

Oregon’s early learning and care professionals play a critical role in supporting the mental health and well-being of children, families, and staff in their child care setting. In addition to sharing resources and creating a safe, welcoming child care setting and community, you can also support others by sharing your own experiences.  

In a recent Education Week article, David Shapiro, program manager at the Colorado School of Public Health’s Center for Health, Work, & Environment shared how it’s important to have “people be willing to share their stories, and I think this starts with leaders. [They can tell staff], ‘This pandemic has been challenging for my own mental health—here’s how it impacted me, and I’ve used my mental health benefits [to get help]’. The more we can build the story of mental health, the more we can spread awareness, the more we can reduce stigma.” 

Click here to read the article and click here to learn about “StigmaFree,” a campaign by the National Alliance on Mental Illness.  

Your mental health matters. Visit https://mhanational.org/teachers-protecting-your-mental-health for ways to help yourself and others in the field. 

Click below for additional resources and professional development opportunities.  

Photo of two girls reading a book together

Coming Soon: DELC Mission, Vision, and Values Feedback Survey 

The Early Learning Division (ELD) needs your help with establishing the new agency, Department of Early Learning and Care (DELC). Watch for announcements about this opportunity to inform DELC and help create a mission, vision, and values that reflects, represents, and supports Oregon communities. 

Photo of blocks spelling out reminder

REMINDERS:  

Health, Safety, and Nutrition Requirement  

Certified Family and Certified Center staff are required to complete at least one hour of Health, Safety, and Nutrition (HSN) training before their facility’s license renewal. 

Registered Family providers and substitutes need to complete the annual HSN training before the end of each year of their license. 

Providers can look for training on the online calendar. 

DEADLINE EXTENDED FOR STATEWIDE SURVEY  
Center- and familybased owners, directors, teachers, assistants, and aides (whether currently employed or not) —share your experiences by completing this survey by May 31, 2022. If you are eligible, you will receive an email with a link to the survey. Look for an email from “The Preschool Development Grant” that you would have received around April 18. Questions? Didn’t get an email and think you should have? Contact Denise Ford. Email: denisef@oslc.org Call or text: 916-205-6851.