There is a lot of talk about all of the changes coming to early childhood education in Ohio and the professionals in the field, especially family child care. These changes, which will roll out over the next 11 months, are happening because the State of Ohio was the proud winner of a not-so-small chunk of change ($69,993,362 to be exact) as part of the federal Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Grant. This is some serious money and it shows how invested Ohio is in improving the quality of care and education of Ohio’s young children.
Ohio has revamped its tiered quality rating improvement system (TQRIS), redeveloped learning and development standards, and made changes to licensing requirements. The state has also begun a process of creating a single definition of quality, inclusive of all program types be they Ohio Department of Education (ODE) or Ohio Department of Job and Family Services (ODJFS) licensed. All of this change generates a lot of questions, and 4C is here to help answer them.
Type B family child care providers (in-home child care providers who care for up to 6 children, and are certified by the county in which they reside) probably have the biggest changes of all coming their way. Beginning January 1, 2014 all certified Type B providers will become licensed and they’ll also be eligible to participate in Step Up To Quality. An estimated 25 percent of children in Greater Cincinnati are in their care, so this is great news!
Though these changes may be big, and at times seem overwhelming, I encourage you to be patient, relax and take it one day at a time. Together we will all get through this and our children will be that much better off. Be patient for the children. Be patient for the families. We’re all in this together!
For more information about changes to family child care or to register for an information session in the Southwest Ohio region, please visit our Web site.