Rutland County Regional Council Recap – September 2018

Darla Senecal
Addison & Rutland Regional Coordinator
Building Bright Futures




In support of the regional Action Plan, Rutland County is partnering with several other organizations to pilot an early literacy program. Thanks to the generosity of The Turrell Fund, Bay & Paul Foundation, and the Cynthia K. Hoehl Institute for Excellence, BBF and the Stern Center for Language and learning offered Building Blocks for Literacy training to area providers in late August. BUILDING BLOCKS FOR LITERACY® offers early care and education providers effective play-based strategies to increase early literacy skills.  Based on information from the National Research Council and the 2008 National Early Literacy Panel, BUILDING BLOCKS trainings support professionals as they work with children ages birth to five to help them become successful literacy learners. There was also a follow up training for a select number of identified mentors that took place a few weeks later.  These mentors will be assigned to assist others who participated in the initial training to help implement and support the skills learned.

In August, the Council determined that they would like to support the area WIC Baby Shower.  This event was normally available only to WIC participants but is now open to all expectant mothers.  The council will be partnering with the Rutland Department of Health district office & Rutland County Parent Child Center on this project. The next Baby Shower will be held on 10/16 in the Fox Room at the Rutland Free Library from 11-12pm. The event will be educational and most of all fun. There will be games, snacks, baby clothing, cake and all moms to be will leave with a gift bag full of items for baby.  For more information or to register to attend please contact Jen at 786-5104.

Kindergarten readiness and transition is a regular topic of discussion at Council meetings. The Council has decided to create a subcommittee to tackle the project. The goal is to build bridges of communication among providers, creating a path to a positive experience for young children and their families. The council is committed to make the transition to school easier for children in our area.

At the Castleton Early Childhood Summer Institute, it was announced that The Early Childhood Lab at Castleton University will be a childcare center that provides educational opportunities for future early childhood educators, employment for current early childhood educators, and a host of collaborative opportunities across curriculum, across campuses, and throughout the state.

This initiative will address several needs throughout the state including a new childcare facility, an accredited bachelor’s degree program leading to early childhood licensure, and the potential for a new diagnostics center.

The Early Childhood Lab at Castleton University is slated to be operational in July 2019 with an anticipated start date for the early childhood education program of fall 2019 pending approval of the Castleton Faculty Assembly and Vermont State Colleges Board of Trustees. Castleton University President, Dr. Karen M. Scolforo stated in her announcement “We are committed to delivering an accessible, affordable, and transformational education at Castleton University. This is another great example of how we can partner with other organizations to help grow Vermont’s workforce, fill a need in providing childcare and childcare providers throughout the state, while also delivering a holistic education to prepare students for a global workplace.”

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