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Little Kids, Big Questions
is a series of 12 podcasts that translates the research of early childhood development into parenting practices that mothers, fathers and other caregivers can tailor to the needs of their own child and family. Click here to listen to or download the podcasts. This podcast series is generously funded by MetLife Foundation.

EHS Child Care Partnerships

In FY 2014 appropriations, Congress provided $500 million for FY 2014 for expanding Early Head Start (EHS), including funding EHS-Child Care Partnerships. Under the Partnerships, new or existing EHS grantees will partner with center-based or family child care providers to enhance the quality of existing child care programs. To help efforts in the field to respond to this important opportunity for changing the early care and learning landscape for infants and toddlers, this webpage provides (a) links to key Department of Health and Human Services websites on developing and applying for partnership grants and (b) resources developed by ZERO TO THREE and others.

For a “first look” at the highlights of the funding announcement, released on June 6, 2014, read the Baby Policy Blog

Early Head Start—Child Care Partnerships Web Page Grants Central


This web page, available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) website, offers extensive information about the Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships opportunity, including how to set up partnerships and apply for funding. Interested persons can ask a question, and Frequently Asked Questions are posted.

Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships Program Resources Web Page


This web page, available on the Office of Child Care’s Technical Assistance Network website, provides audio, transcripts, and slide presentations from a webinar series on Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships, as well as other related tools and resources.

Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships Resources List


This BUILD Initiative web page offers videos, slide presentations, and other materials from an April 2014 meeting entitled Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships: Making the Most of It! In particular, a resource list compiles a variety of resources for re-design or development of partnerships.

Early Head Start–Child Care Partnerships Fact Sheet


This fact sheet draws on past research and experiences with partnerships to show how they work and benefit young children and families.

Early Head Start Fact Sheet


This fact sheet provides a summary of Early Head Start services and structure. It also includes highlights from previous impact studies.

Child Care Fact Sheet(Coming Soon!)

Expanding Access to Early Head Start: State Initiatives for Infants and Toddlers at Risk


This joint report by the Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) and ZERO TO THREE highlights state efforts to expand and enhance access to Early Head Start services for infants, toddlers, and their families. It describes the diverse strategies states are using to build upon Early Head Start and offers recommendations for states interested in expanding this program

Promoting Local Partnerships Between Child Care and Early Head Start: Ideas for State Leaders


This issue paper, available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) website, discusses the importance of early childhood partnerships—specifically between Early Head Start and child care—that meet the needs of infants, toddlers, and families.

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Partnerships With Family Child Care

Staffed Family Child Care Networks: A Strategy to Enhance Quality Care for Infants and Toddlers


This paper defines staffed Family Child Care (FCC) networks and examines how they are uniquely positioned to improve the quality of care that infants and toddlers receive in FCC settings.

Building Partnerships Between Early Head Start Grantees and Family Child Care Providers: Lessons From the Early Head Start for Family Child Care Project


This report, available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) website, evaluates the Early Head Start for Family Child Care Project, which was designed to develop and pilot strategies for building Early Head Start and family child care partnerships. It documents the characteristics of the participating Early Head Start grantees, their child care partners, the Child Care Partnership Coordinators, and the communities in which they operate. The report describes how the work was implemented at local and state levels, how much progress was made toward reaching targeted outcomes, and what types of partnerships were formed to support collaboration.

Tip Sheets for Administrators


These four tip sheets, available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) website, help Early Head Start and child care administrators partner together to improve the quality of care for children and help families move toward their work and education goals. They also provide insight into how these two programs can creatively combine resources to optimally serve low-income infants, toddlers, and families. The tip sheets in the series are: (1) Why Partner?; (2) Creating Systems for Seamless Service Delivery: The Key to Helping Young Children Thrive; (3) Making Program Regulations Work For You; and (4) Looking to the Future: Considerations in Building an EHS in FCC Program.

Bringing High-Quality Comprehensive Care Home: Strategies to Build and Sustain Early Head Start in Family Child Care


This “Technical Assistance Paper,” available on the Early Childhood Learning and Knowledge Center (ECLKC) website, builds on lessons learned about delivering Early Head Start (EHS) in family child care drawn from reports and interviews with some of the consultants who worked with demonstration sites as a part of the EHS for Family Child Care Project.

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Needs Assessment

State Baby Fact Sheets


These fact sheets for each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia provide information about the status of infants, toddlers, and families in each state, presented through the framework of good health, strong families, and positive early learning experiences.

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Continuum of Services

Baby Matters: A Gateway to State Policies and Initiatives


Baby Matters is a searchable database that contains resource information on state policies and initiatives that impact infants, toddlers, and their families. The policies and initiatives are searchable by category, state, or keyword. A detailed description of each policy or initiative is provided, as well as links to additional related resources.

Infants and Toddlers in the Policy Picture: A Self-Assessment Checklist for States


This self-assessment provides questions to spark discussion about the needs of infants, toddlers, and their families and to lay the foundation for building an effective state early childhood development system. The checklist is based on research about effective practices in states and is organized around the key areas known to impact healthy development for infants and toddlers: good health, strong families, and positive early learning experiences.

Moving an Infant-Toddler Policy Agenda


This web page contains notes, slide presentations, and other resources from a ZERO TO THREE state policy action team meeting, held in May 2013, on developing and moving an infant-toddler policy agenda. Session topics included crafting an infant-toddler policy agenda, developing effective messaging, engaging “hard to reach” families, leveraging funding sources to support infant-toddler initiatives, and improving the quality of infant-toddler services.

 Putting the Pieces Together for Infants and Toddlers: Comprehensive, Coordinated Systems


This policy brief outlines the need for a comprehensive, coordinated early childhood system. It discusses the necessary components—high-quality, affordable early care and education, health and mental health, and family support services—that such a system needs, as well as the infrastructure that supports them.

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Comprehensive Services

Changing the Course for Infants and Toddlers: A Survey of State Child Welfare Policies and Initiatives 


This report, done in partnership with Child Trends, presents findings from a 2013 survey of state child welfare agencies about the policies and practices that guide states’ work in addressing the needs of infants and toddlers who have been maltreated. It sets the stage for understanding how states are currently supporting young children and where opportunities exist to expand supports.

Nurturing Change: State Strategies for Improving Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health


This paper provides an in-depth look at some of the promising strategies states have used to address infant and early childhood mental health (I-ECMH) access, delivery, financing, evidence base, and systems-level issues across the promotion, prevention, and treatment continuum. State policymakers will find actionable models and policy strategies, as well as strategic questions to consider in planning for I-ECMH.

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Continuity of Care

 Promoting Continuity of Care in Infant/Toddler Settings: What Can State/Territory Leaders Do?


This resource, available on the Office of Child Care’s Technical Assistance Network website, provides background information and examples of potential strategies that leaders can use as they consider the best opportunities to promote continuity of care in their state or territory. Areas of influence include subsidy policies and procedures, quality improvement efforts, and professional development and workforce initiatives.

 Infant and Toddler Continuity of Care Assessment Tool


This self-assessment tool, available on the Office of Child Care’s Technical Assistance Network website, can help leaders examine current practices and consider how best to promote continuity of care in their state or territory. Areas to examine include subsidy policies, licensing regulations, Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS), and professional development.

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Quality Rating and Improvement Systems (QRIS)

Supporting Babies Through QRIS: Inclusion of Infant and Toddler Quality Standards


This resource provides some examples of QRIS standards that have been included in statewide-operating QRIS that intentionally help programs promote the healthy development and learning of infants and toddlers.

Supporting Babies Through QRIS: Implementation Status and Tools in US States and Other Jurisdictions


This resource provides a national scan of the operational status of U.S. states’ and jurisdictions’ QRIS, as well as links to their QRIS standards and tools.

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Professional Development

 Strengthening the Early Childhood and School-Age Workforce: A Tool to Improve Workplace Conditions, Compensation, and Access to Professional Development


This reference and resource tool, available on the Office of Child Care’s Technical Assistance Network website, includes research, definitions, examples, and links to more information to help state decision-makers increase and retain a skilled workforce by improving their workplace conditions, compensation, and access to professional development.

A Guide to Effective Consultation With Settings Serving Infants, Toddlers, and Their Families: Core Knowledge, Competencies, and Dispositions


This document, funded by the Office of Child Care, defines the core knowledge, competencies, and dispositions for consultants working with early care and education programs and settings serving infants, toddlers, and their families. Improving the quality of infant-toddler early care and education is the overarching outcome of this guide, as research supports child care consultation as an effective method to improve program quality and facilitate family involvement. The development of this guide was driven by the efforts to improve the quality of care for infants and toddlers and their families in the New England states.

 Relationships: The Heart of Development and Learning


This paper, funded by the Office of Child Care, is one of three infant-toddler modules created to support consultants working in child care settings, especially those who have not had education or training specific to infants and toddlers in group care. This module provides information on the centrality of relationships within infant-toddler development and basic concepts of relationship-based practices.

 Infant/Toddler Screening and Assessment


This paper, funded by the Office of Child Care, is one of three infant-toddler modules created to support consultants working in child care settings, especially those who have not had education or training specific to infants and toddlers in group care. It provides concrete information on infant-toddler development, how to engage parents in screening and assessment, and what to do when a child is not typically developing.

Infant/Toddler Curriculum and Individualization


This paper, funded by the Office of Child Care, is one of three infant-toddler modules created to support consultants working in child care settings, especially those who have not had education or training specific to infants and toddlers in group care. It focuses on curriculum definitions, the developing and implementation of curriculum, and the key community partners needed for successful implementation.

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Inspiring Innovation: Creative State Financing Structures for Infant-Toddler Services


This joint paper, developed by ZERO TO THREE in partnership with the Ounce of Prevention, highlights the work of four states—Illinois, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma—that have developed innovative financing structures to support services for at-risk infants and toddlers. It reveals key policy elements that cut across all four states, as well as strategic decisions and recommendations critical to the establishment of financing structures that support high-quality programs for infants and toddlers.


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Copyright © 2014 ZERO TO THREE: National Center for Infants, Toddlers and Families
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