Child Care as a Public Good
Our coalition will seek to change public perceptions of early care and education. High-quality care will be seen as the public good it is, a part of the community infrastructure like schools and healthcare. We will also help change the realities and connections of early care: programs will serve as hubs for information, family support, and connection to related services (e.g. education, workforce services, health, and mental health).
Transformation with Equity
For the first time, early childhood advocacy in Connecticut will seek a transformation of the early childhood system, with a focus on distributing funds in an equitable manner. Examples of transformation include:
Addressing the true cost of quality care in order to give early educators living wages and to make their businesses sustainable. Considering that a disproportionate number of our early educators are women of color, this is an equity issue. Strategies to address inequitable compensation and professional development are needed to attract and retain early educators.
Building the supply of infant and toddler care by finding creative ways to fill the tens of thousands of missing infant/toddler slots in the state’s child care deserts, most of them in under-resourced urban neighborhoods and rural areas.
Supporting the whole family through two-generation wraparound services such as home visiting.
A New Workforce
To build and sustain an excellent workforce, our goal is to have highly trained providers with access to the full range of professional development opportunities, including coaching, apprenticeships, training, and professional degrees and credentials tailored to the needs of educators who work in center-, home-, and school-based settings. We will work to increase public investment in the early childhood system to provide livable wages and benefits for all early childhood educators. We will seek expanded support for facility development so that centers and family child care homes can provide safe environments that support play and exploration.