DENVER (Jan. 8, 2016) – The Office of Early Childhood invites its partners, early childhood professionals, parents, and caregivers to engage in public comment throughout January on Colorado’s Child Care Development Fund (CCDF) State Plan, which guides the state’s implementation of the federal Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act reauthorized in November 2014.
The Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act of 2014 was signed into law by President Obama with bipartisan support. It reauthorizes and significantly revises the purposes of the CCDF program and requirements, including: the establishment of minimum child care assistance eligibility periods; health and safety standards and training requirements for child care providers; monitoring; consumer information, and other components designed to strengthen child care and to support child and family success.
The final State Plan is due to the federal Administration of Children and Families by March 1. Five regional public hearings and a statewide webinar are scheduled to discuss the draft CCDF plan through January.
“The CCDF program has always played an important role in helping families afford care so that they can work, improve their education, and/or increase their training,” the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) said last November.
“The scope and purposes of the child care law now include promoting child development, engaging parents in the development of their children, and helping more children in low-income families benefit from high quality child care. To achieve these purposes, lead agencies are working with child care licensing, quality improvement and Head Start and prekindergarten programs, as well as reaching out to child and family health and social support services, to strengthen all childhood systems in new and exciting ways.”
Hearings will be held on Tuesdays throughout the month, in Pueblo (Jan. 12, 6-8 p.m.), Denver (Jan. 19, 1-3 p.m.), Lakewood (Jan. 19, 6-8 p.m.) and Fort Morgan (Jan. 26, 5:30-7:30 p.m.). Two Thursday events – in Rifle on Jan. 21 from 6-8 p.m. and a webinar 2:30-4 p.m. on Jan. 28 – complete the schedule. Full details on all sessions as well as a copy of the plan and an area to submit comments online are available here.
Individuals are strongly encouraged to register to be notified by email of any event changes, since public hearings may become webinars in the event of inclement weather.