(Lakewood, Colo. – Jan. 13, 2014) Jefferson County Public Library (JCPL) announced today that it has joined an innovative partnership to support early learning in Jefferson County. Through this partnership, JCPL will support Jefferson County’s Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP) and the Triad Early Childhood Council in their efforts to increase access to high-quality child care for infants and toddlers from families with low income.
Jefferson County’s CCAP and the Triad Early Childhood Council were recently awarded $483,738.68 from the Colorado Department of Human Services to address this issue. The funding will be used to provide select JeffersonCounty child-care facilities with materials, resources, coaching and professional development to support high-quality services. A portion of the funding will also be used to reimburse providers who have achieved a high-level of quality child care.
In its initial stages, the program will serve 19 child-care facilities serving children from families with low-income. The Library will support this effort by presenting storytimes at licensed child-care centers and offer coaching, materials and other early literacy resources to staff, parents and caregivers.
“The Library has a long tradition of teaching important pre-reading skills to thousands of children every year,” said Donna Walker, public services director, JCPL. “Our programs are geared to make early learning fun, both at home and in the classroom, and we’re pleased to further extend these services to child-care centers and homes in our community.”
“We’re thrilled to have the Library support us in these efforts,” said Patricia Bolton, executive director, Triad Early Childhood Council. “We know that positive experiences with early literacy can enhance child development and give our youngest residents a strong foundation for success in life. In addition, by coaching these child-care providers in early literacy skills, the Library helps us to ensure the success and sustainability of this initiative.”
“Many families with low income have a desperate need for affordable, high-quality child care,” said Margie Morris, Jefferson County’s CCAP coordinator. “However, only two percent of Jefferson County child-care providers are currently certified or accredited by quality rating agencies such as Qualistar, National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC) or National Association for Family Child Care (NAFCC).
“We would like to encourage other community partners to join us in this effort as well,” Morris added. “We believe this collaborative approach to providing assistance and support will encourage more child care providers to meet quality certification guidelines and enhance the quality of child care across the county.”
To explore partnership opportunities, please contact Pat Bolton, at 303-914-6527.
More about Triad Early Childhood Council
More about Jefferson County Public Library
More about JCPL’s early literacy efforts