The Ounce and its partners are closely monitoring the evolving COVID-19 situation at federal, state and local levels. We are responding to emergency requests from state leaders across the country to support the ever-shifting landscape of state policy needs around early childhood. In addition to providing counsel and support directly to the Illinois Governor’s Office, we have provided recommendations and research around state responses to COVID-19 to leaders in Texas, Georgia, Washington, Oregon and others. We are also actively signing on to letters to federal and state legislators requesting significant attention to and investments in our country’s young children,
their families and the early education field. Our latest resources and recommendations are below.
Ounce Policy Recommendations:
- Policy recommendations for federal, state and local governments and systems leaders to support families and programs affected by this ongoing crisis.
- CARES Act guidance for governors and state leaders to help states maximize the impact of the relief funds and allow the early childhood sector to emerge from the crisis stronger than before.
- CARES Act summary memo – a useful guide for early education administrators, school superintendents, and other early childhood leaders that outlines the new funding options available to states as part of the financial stimulus package.
- The emergency child care memo provides an overview of options available to state leaders as they address the challenges of providing emergency child care during this crisis.
- The early childhood partnerships memo provides a summary of cross-sector resources and partnerships that can provide supports to a greater number of educators, families and children during the pandemic’s school and program closures.
- The cross-sector partnerships to support educators and families memo offers suggested methods of partnering with other early-childhood-focused organizations in local communities to share ideas and strategies during this challenging time.
Ounce Requests and Statements:
- April 8: the Ounce joins child care organizations in calling on Congress to address the immediate needs of the child care industry through technical corrections and expansion of provisions in the CARES Act.
- March 26: read the statement by the Ounce and its partners in the early learning and child care community on the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act (CARES Act).
- March 18: the Ounce and its partners urge Congress to include robust supports to the child care industry as they develop an economic stimulus package in response to the COVID-19 crisis.
- March 12: the Ounce joins advocates in calling on Congress to consider child care in COVID-19 stimulus package.
- Over the course of the last year, the Ounce has worked with a group of early childhood organizations, community leaders and experts to design a shared online community –
the Early Childhood Connector – for our field to connect and share, in real-time, the great work the early childhood community is doing. While this platform will ultimately become a broader knowledge-sharing community for the early childhood field – the ECConnector has launched early to facilitate a more collaborative response to the COVID-19 crisis. Join today so we can all work more efficiently to respond to the urgent needs facing our families and children!
- National resources for providers and advocates to help you through this difficult time as you work to support our youngest learners and their families.
- Are you in Washington? The Washington State Department of Youth and Families is providing the most up-to-date COVID-19 information and general guidelines to providers, families and state organizations.
- Are you in Illinois? Our Illinois policy resources provide a variety of helpful information and guidelines for families, children and providers in Illinois.
For additional information about COVID-19 policy work in your state, please contact the Ounce’s National Policy Team at NationalPolicy@theOunce.org. If you would like to learn more about the current policy work as it relates to COVID-19 in Illinois, please contact the Illinois Policy Team at Advocacy@theOunce.org.