News

State Advisory Council Recap, May 2019


Babys playing together in the kindergarten.

At the May meeting, after passing the FY20 budget for Building Bright Futures, the SAC delved into both of its priority areas for 2019, early childhood and family mental health (ECFMH) and supporting the early childhood workforce.

In past meetings, the SAC heard from designated agencies and participated in small group discussions, leading to the suggestion to create a ECFMH working group or task force to move forward. In the May meeting, the SAC was joined by a parent from Southeast Vermont via videoconference to hear the perspective of a mom trying to navigate the systems and supports available to her and her child. She gave the group a compelling first-hand account of challenges with child care, employment, finances and other difficulties that all stem from having a child with complex needs. The conversation served to remind the partners at the table that sometimes systems don’t work as intended, and that the people who need those systems don’t always know what options exist, or how to access them.

That compelling first-hand account led into a proposal to create an Early Childhood and Family  Mental Health Task Force. The Task Force would aim to bring together people across disciplines on a state level to identify and affirm vision statements that speak to an integrated system of care. The Task Force would identify existing forums that are doing similar alignment work related to ECFMH in order to identify intersections and opportunities with these groups. They would also review positive mental health frameworks in use across Vermont and identify policy recommendations to reach this shared vision.

As part of the SAC’s priority of supporting the early childhood workforce, Janet McLaughlin, Co-Chair of Early Learning & Development Committee gave a presentation about a new campaign to recruit entrepreneurial child care providers to start their own businesses and how the campaign ties to priority #3 from the Early Childhood Action Plan (All children and families have access to high quality opportunities that meet their needs). The ELD Committee’s key priority for 2018/2019 has been to increase the number of childcare providers and the number of children and families that can be served across the state. In order to do this, strategies include:

  1. Address barriers
  2. Create a marketing campaign to recruit entrepreneurs into the early childhood field
  3. Create a marketing campaign to recruit more people into the workforce
  4. Increase compensation and benefits
  5. Conduct a demand study to inform what Vermont families need and want for childcare
  6. Expand supports for business start-up and expansion

There is an implementation team in place to help complete this work.

Before closing the meeting, the SAC heard an update on the work that is underway to revise the Early Childhood Action Plan. ECAP committees are updating the document to reflect current priorities and strategies that can be used to best support Vermont children and families.

Early Childhood stakeholders will gather at the July 23rd ECAP Summit to review accomplishments, policy requests and set priorities for the coming year.

Similar Blog

Blog

Young children and teachers around a table in a classroom
September 29, 2022

VECF Spotlight: Training Tomorrow’s Educators in Rutland County

At the Rutland County Parent-Child Center (RCPCC), college and high school students are getting hands-on training in early childhood education with the support of a grant from Building Bright Futures’ Vermont Early Childhood Fund. (Applications for the next round of VECF grants are open through Oct. 7, 2022.) This grant is a strategy to address […]

Read More

Blog

A preschooler painting a bird house
September 27, 2022

Share your feedback by Oct. 3 for Preschool Development Grant

Vermont is excited to develop an application to compete for a federal Preschool Development Grant. Please answer a very brief survey by Monday, Oct. 3 about what priorities you’d like to elevate for Preschool Development Grant (PDG) funds. Your input and prioritization for how Vermont uses these federal funds is important! You can learn more […]

Read More

Blog

September 22, 2022

VECF Spotlight: An anti-racist initiative forging new connections in Burlington

The Vermont Early Childhood Fund is a Building Bright Futures (BBF) initiative to support creative solutions that will improve the well-being of children (prenatal–age 8), their families, and the Vermont communities in which they live. Eligible projects address one or more of the regional priorities identified annually by the BBF Regional Early Childhood Council and […]

Read More

Stay up to date on News + Events.

Please check your email for a confirmation email.