The Early Childhood Council Leadership Alliance (ECCLA) and Early Childhood Councils are supporting the statewide conversation to develop innovative workforce strategies that enhance recruitment, retention, and compensation. The Early Childhood Workforce 2020 plan provides an ambitious road map to promote a high quality, effective, and diverse early childhood workforce to support the needs of young children and their families.
To contribute to the plan, ECCLA and Councils provided data and observations on local workforce challenges and the impact among families. Councils then supported eight statewide community meetings with stakeholders to discuss research findings and propose local solutions. Following this stakeholder engagement, Early Milestones Colorado launched a competitive grant opportunity for communities to pilot innovative early childhood workforce strategies.
We are thrilled to announce that four Councils were awarded Early Childhood Workforce Innovation Grants, and will pursue innovative solutions focused on compensation, targeted recruitment, education and career pathways, and working conditions. The following Council projects will be supported by grants in the coming year:
- Early Childhood Options (Summit County Early Childhood Council) – Compensation Parity in Summit County: Development of a county-wide salary schedule and shared services approach to benefits management.
- Denver’s Early Childhood Council – Denver’s Early Childhood Workforce Initiative: An apprenticeship project aimed at increasing diverse and bilingual educators.
- Early Childhood Council of Larimer County – Expanding Professional Possibilities in Early Childhood: ECE cohort program using a hybrid model of classes and placements in supportive work environments.
- Early Childhood Council of La Plata County – La Plata County & Southern Ute EC Workforce Initiative: Expansion of education pathways through a concurrent enrollment program.
Across Colorado, Councils are developing local solutions with their partners that advance the early childhood workforce and provide high quality, affordable early care and education opportunities for all families. If you are a local early childhood leader, policy maker, child care provider, parent, or community member, we encourage you to connect with your Early Childhood Council to learn more about these exciting new initiatives.
For more information on the Transforming the Early Childhood Workforce in Colorado Initiative visit www.earlymilestones.org/transforming-ec-workforce/.