ECCLA Spring 2022 News
We all have often heard it said that change is the only true constant in life. Nowhere is this truer than in early childhood. We all work to support a time in human development that sees the most change and growth out of any age or stage. We work to support babies as they go from reflexive beings unable to talk or walk to children that communicate emotions, desires, needs, that move, run, tumble, and jump. We support a period of development like no other that is so full of change that we constantly must adapt, try new things, and be ready for the next big achievement. For many of us, this seems natural when we think of children. But it feels much less natural when it comes to thinking of practices, systems, and communities. For some reason, as we move further from the young children we care so much about, making changes gets harder and harder. Whether it be changing the way we do something on our computers or making vast systems change like we are experiencing in Colorado now.
Change makes our brains and our hearts hurt. We wonder if things will be better on the other side of the change, we worry they won’t be, we stress that the change is going to disrupt what we do and how we do it. Over the years I have learned to approach change with a mindset of resilience. Judith Rodin described resilience as “The capacity of any entity to prepare for disruptions, to recover from shocks and stresses, and to adapt and grow from disruptive experiences.” Resilience is marked by our abilities to be aware, adaptive, diverse, integrated, and self-regulated.
The young children we all work so hard for are incredibly resilient! Every day they demonstrate their resilience in the face of change. Their brains and bodies change and develop and throughout the process, they are aware of their growth, adapt to the change, rely on diverse supports and experiences, integrate all of their learning, and learn to self-regulate. As adults that care for young children, we have to learn to be just as resilient. We have to shift our thinking away from wondering how we will sustain IF something changes, to how we will be resilient when the change comes. As we think about, debate, and advocate for all of the change that is about to happen to our early childhood systems we have to remember that we are just as resilient as the young children we care about. We must remember what is most important, hold on to our valued relationships and be ready to absorb what is coming. My hope for the coming months is that we can all practice our resilience and be ready to bounce forward with change, just like our children do every day.
Maegan Lokteff, PhD
ECCLA Executive Director
- The Family Child Care Home Improvement Grant application closes on March 28th, 2022. We will post awarded recipients on our website once decisions have been made. We did receive news that we will receive funding for an additional round in 2022. Since the inception of the Family Child Care Home Improvement Grant Initiative, ECCLA has awarded $399,000 to 105 family child care homes across 32 counties in Colorado. These funds have been used for facilities improvements focused on expanding licensed capacity, health, safety, and quality improvement.
- ECCLA is continuing to accept applications for the Back to Work: Early Childhood Education Scholarship Program. This scholarship is intended for students who have experienced an economic loss within the last two years due to the COVID-19 pandemic, are seeking to enroll or are already enrolled in an Early Childhood Education-related certificate or degree program at a Public Institution of Higher Learning located in Colorado, and who are able to complete a credential or degree by June 2024.
- The T.E.A.C.H Early Childhood® Colorado Program is accepting applications and will begin awarding soon for the summer semester! Scroll down for more information about the new T.E.A.C.H. program model, new online application, and more! In 2021, this scholarship provided $138,442 in assistance to 60 students across the state. Those 60 students impacted 3,540 children ages 0-8. To learn more about the 2021 impact of the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Colorado Scholarship, you can read the full annual report here.
Upcoming Member Events
- The Community of Practice (COP) for Family Child Care Home Navigators and Access and Outreach Coordinators will meet on the 1st and 3rd Tuesday of the month from 11:00am to 12:00pm. The purpose of this CoP is to align supports, resources, and communications around this role. We will share strategies, successes, and challenges and collaborate on best practices. Register here.
- The ECCLA Leadership Retreat will be on May 19th and 20th in Denver, CO. Please keep an eye on your inbox for an RSVP.
To stay up-to-date on ECCLA events, you can view our website calendar.
A Warm Welcome to our New Team Members!
Dallas joined ECCLA in March of 2022 as the ECE Scholarship/Career Navigator for the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood Colorado Scholarship Program. Dallas has an Associate’s in Early Childhood Education and is attending CSU to earn a Bachelor’s in Human Development and Family Studies with a concentration in Early Childhood Education. She started her career in ECE at Young Peoples’ Learning Center in Fort Collins, primarily as a toddler teacher. She has a passion for ECE – especially infants and toddlers, inclusive education, and the pedagogy of care.
Enola (she/her) joined ECCLA in January of 2022 as the Communications and Program Support Coordinator. She transitioned to this role after almost nine years as an early childhood teacher working with preschool-aged children. In 2013, she stumbled into a position as a teacher’s aide in California where she discovered a passion for social-emotional curriculum and nonprofit early learning programs. She has taught in Colorado Preschool Program, Head Start, and community-based non-profit programs. Her previous position was at Teaching Tree Early Learning in Fort Collins as an Early Childhood Teacher. During her time as a teacher, Enola experienced the benefits of coaching and peer-mentor relationships, and to pay that forward, she has been a mentor through the Early Childhood Council of Larimer County’s Expanding Possibilities in Early Childhood workforce development program, is a Teachstone CLASS Pre-K Observer, and is a credentialed Early Childhood Trainer. Enola considers herself to be a proud and passionate advocate for early childhood education and is also the part-time executive director of the Colorado chapter of the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).
Stephanie Martin joined ECCLA in March 2022 as the Data and Evaluation Coordinator. It is exciting for her to be back in the world of Councils as Stephanie oversaw Routt County’s early childhood system serving as the Council Coordinator for First Impressions from 2005-2019. Hailing from Alabama, Stephanie earned her Bachelor of Science in Human Development and Family Studies at Auburn University (War Eagle!) and a Master of Science in Early Childhood Education from Jacksonville State University. Stephanie is a life-long learner, completing the Coaching Consortium in 2015 and becoming a Buell Fellow in 2019. Teaching ECE classes for Colorado Northwestern Community College keeps Stephanie ingrained in impacts and outcomes for families and children statewide. After 20 years in Steamboat, Stephanie is almost considered a local. You will find Stephanie enjoying time with family, friends, traveling with her husband, reading, and enjoying outdoor activities.
- Coaching Connections and Collaboration Committee (C4): In an effort to align coaching supports and communications across the state, ECCLA has convened the Coaching Connections and Collaboration Committee (C4). This diverse group of stakeholders all have a vested interest in the success and growth of early childhood coaches across the state. By gathering once a month, we are able to share upcoming professional development opportunities, as well as, brainstorm how to build out a sustainable support system for both new and experienced coaches.
- Dynamic Coaching Systems Free Webinar: All in it Together – Teaming and Collaboration, April 21st from 2-3pm MT. What does it really mean to team and work collaboratively? It’s hard work AND it’s so beneficial to staff, children and families. Learn some key strategies with others from across the US to build a feeling of “we are all in it together” in your program. Register here.
- The Next Early Childhood Coaching Certificate Cohort through Dynamic Coaching Systems begins May 4th. Registration closes March 28th, 2022. You can register here.
- Facilitating Reflective Supervision/Consultation (RS/C) Training: This training is for coaches, administrators and other professionals in relationship-based roles with early childhood professionals. This free, virtual training is offered through the Office of Early Childhood to support access to reflective supervision and consultation across the state. You can join the waiting list here.
- Introduction to Relationship-Based Mentoring in Education: In collaboration with Dynamic Coaching Systems, Red Rocks Community College is offering this new course designed for early childhood directors and administrators. Click here to learn more.
T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Colorado Scholarship Program: Recipient Milestones and Spotlight!
We have Funding!
We were notified late in 2021 that we would receive funding from the Office of Early Childhood for the scholarship program for the next three years! We have been able to clear our waitlist and are actively accepting applications for 2022. We are still accepting applications for the spring 2022 semester. Even if you have paid your tuition, you should apply as we will reimburse 90% of what your tuition costs! If you are an early childhood professional working in a licensed center or family-based program, you are eligible to apply. You can find out more about eligibility on our website www.ecclacolorado.org/teachscholarships.
New Scholarship Model!
In spring of 2022, we released a new scholarship model for early childhood professionals that are looking to obtain their director qualifications. You can find out more about this model on our website.
Apply Using the Brand New Online Application!
At the beginning of 2022, we released the T.E.A.C.H. application online! It is easier than ever to apply for a scholarship. You can visit our website for more information or go to https://awards.ecclacolorado.org to apply.
At the end of the fall semester, we had many T.E.A.C.H. Scholarship recipients who reached their educational and professional milestones through the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Colorado Scholarship.
Early Childhood and Director Credential
Brittany Anderson (ECT and Director Credential)
KayLynn Whittecar (Infant Nursery Supervisor Credential)
Associate Degrees in Early Childhood
Dallas Rae Brown
Bachelor’s Degrees in early childhood or Related Field with ECE Emphasis
Congratulations on your hard work and accomplishments!
Recipient Spotlight: Tessa Serrano
“The T.E.A.C.H. Scholarship has been the key to my success as a college student. With it, I have been able to achieve a grade point average that will qualify me to graduate Magna cum Laude along with maintaining my focus on my academics versus the pressure of affording an education. However, it is not just the financial support that made T.E.A.C.H. such an imperative part of my college journey; it has been the endless support from staff like Shannon Hall who provided information in a timely and organized manner. As a T.E.A.C.H. recipient, I remained motivated to complete an associate degree in Early Childhood and a bachelor’s degree in Human Development and Family Relations. I am beyond grateful to T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Colorado Scholarship and the Early Childhood Council Leadership Alliance for supporting teachers in achieving their goals and dreams and assisting them in earning a higher education to benefit families and children attending schools in Denver.”
|Thank you, Lakeshore Learning, for being our 1st Quarter Sponsor and a longstanding partner to both ECCLA and the Early Childhood Councils.|
A special thank you to Todd Hayes and Ben Graessle. They are the dynamic duo that truly believe in our mission and vision. Thank you to Ron Mohl and Patti Jo Wilson for facilitating a fun and informative training on implicit bias. 2022 is off to a great start!