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What’s New and Noteworthy at ZERO TO THREE
A Message from ZERO TO THREE’s Executive Director, Matthew Melmed
Dear ZERO TO THREE Members,
Earlier this month in San Diego we held our most successful Annual Conference to date with over 3,500 attendees. Dedicated experts in the field joined us from all around the world for the event and we were especially pleased to have nearly 850 of our members (the VIPs of the conference!) with us to enjoy the onsite member lounge and member exclusive sessions.
I’m happy I can take a few moments to update you on some of our other important work and successes. Below are highlights I would like to share with you this month on many of our ZERO TO THREE projects:
The Policy Center was active on multiple fronts throughout November.
- Advocacy for MIECHV and CHIP Reauthorization
On September 30, Congress let funding for both the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Program and the Children’s Health Insurance Program expire, leaving states scrambling as they try to plan for the future. The Policy Center continues to support advocacy efforts to reauthorize both programs, including participating in multiple days of action where we worked in coalition with our partners to urge phone calls, emails, and social media messages be sent to Congress.
- Work on disaster relief for infants and toddlers
The federal policy team has been working to highlight how infants and toddlers are affected by disasters such as the recent hurricanes that hit Texas, Florida, and Puerto Rico.
- Advancing child care proposals
We continue to work on advancing child care proposals that comprehensively address the needs of low-income families with infants and toddlers.
- ZERO TO THREE co-sponsored a call with the field on October 4 on the “Child Care for Working Families Act,” featuring the bill’s principal sponsors, Senator Patty Murray (D-WA) and Congressman Bobby Scott (D-VA).
- ZERO TO THREE has continued to work with Congressional offices to underscore the need for improving the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit in the tax bill and also to promote ways to augment direct assistance through mandatory child care funding.
QUALITY IMPROVEMENT CENTER FOR RESEARCH-BASED INFANT-TODDLER COURT TEAMS (QIC–CT)/SAFE BABIES COURT TEAMS PROJECT (SBCT)
- A Guide to the Implementation of the Safe Babies Court Team Approach was completed and made available in the ZERO TO THREE Bookstore. Designed to help communities start or expand their efforts to meet the needs of families whose infants and toddlers are in foster care, the 278-page guide provides communities with practical advice and best practices.
- The first Safe Babies Court Team Community Coordinator Academy, a ZERO TO THREE Leadership Academy, was launched in October, and 18 participants attended the face-to-face component. This training experience began with a meeting where participants received a high-level overview of the job, with an emphasis on helping trainees do the job when they returned home. Subsequent training, offered via webinar, will provide greater depth on the topics identified at the face-to-face training.
- QIC-CT has started work on the newest part of our current project, which is the development of eight 30-minute online learning modules for judges and attorneys to ensure that all are well-informed on early child development principles and evidence-based practices.
MILITARY FAMILY PROJECTS
USAA recently awarded ZERO TO THREE a grant to enhance our mobile app, Babies on the Homefront! This app, which is available for free through the Apple and Google Play Stores, provides military and veteran families quick access to information on supporting their babies and toddlers with the anticipated challenges in military life such as moving and deployment, as well as the unanticipated challenges of parental injury.
PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT AND WORKFORCE INNOVATIONS
We are excited to share we’ve successfully completed the development and piloting of two new products and services:
- The ZERO TO THREE Critical Competencies for Infant-Toddler Educators™ professional development courses, training-of-trainers, and trainer certification: The team developed a suite of materials and delivered nearly 50 days of training in four pilot partner states (Arkansas, Nevada, Ohio, and Pennsylvania). This pilot produced more than 60 new ZERO TO THREE Provisionally Certified Trainers: Critical Competencies, with a potential impact of positively impacting interactions between educators and more than 60,000 children.
- The Growing Brain: From Birth to 5 Years Old Curriculum: This innovative training curriculum fills a unique niche by providing a comprehensive understanding of how the brain develops, and it includes strategies to encourage healthy brain development.
Thank you for being a part of ZERO TO THREE, and we welcome your feedback! Please feel free to email our Member Services department to share your questions, concerns, or suggestions.
Matthew E. Melmed
ZERO TO THREE