DEEL’s fall 2022 newsletter is available now! This issue features investments in Seattle Preschool Program Summer Extension, International Baccalaureate programming at Rainier Beach High School, and educator diversity. Also highlighted are DEEL’s proposed 2023 budget, a spotlight on our new Early Learning Division Director, Leilani Dela Cruz, and supportive student and family resources from preschool to postsecondary.[Read more…]
DEEL recently announced Leilani Dela Cruz as the new director of the department’s Early Learning Division, which supports efforts around ensuring that all Seattle families have access to affordable child care and all Seattle children are kindergarten ready. Leilani joined DEEL at the department’s founding in 2015, serving first as the Early Learning Operations Manager and, most recently, Deputy Division Director. With the departure of former division director Monica Liang Aguirre in May of 2022, Leilani began serving as interim division director while a competitive hiring process was conducted.
DEEL conducted a national search and considered a diverse candidate pool before selecting Dela Cruz for this important role within the department. With more than 70 staff and a $65 million budget, the Early Learning Division Director is responsible for directing and managing City investments in early learning, including the Seattle Preschool Program, Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP) classrooms, the Child Care Assistance Program, and multiple investments in the prenatal-to-three space, such as partnerships for ParentChild+, Nurse Family Partnership, Developmental Bridge Program, and Prenatal-to-Three community grants. The EL Director also plays an essential role in developing strategic partnerships with key stakeholders in early learning, including labor and community partners; Seattle Public Schools; federal, state, and county government entities; and elected officials.[Read more…]
DEEL is also supporting a series of job fair events this September to draw more workers to the child care profession and support preschool and child care classrooms in the coming school year.
* Payments for all child care staff before payroll taxes: $503
This week, payments will begin going out to 631 Seattle providers who are receiving a flexible-spending stabilization grant from the City’s Department of Education and Early Learning to support ongoing recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. Additionally, 4,589 Seattle child care workers will receive a one-time staff retention payment between $400-500, as part of $7.4 million in joint funding from the City of Seattle and King County to support the region’s child care workers.[Read more…]
DEEL’s summer 2022 newsletter is available now! This issue features DEEL’s investments in summer programs and the annual FEPP Levy Year 2 Report for 2020-2021. Also included are highlights from the ribbon-cutting ceremony for SPP Provider Tiny Tots Development Center’s new facility in Othello Square, Seattle Public Schools graduations, and upcoming funding opportunities for early learning providers and community partners.
Child care is an essential part of our city’s infrastructure, allowing countless families to contribute to the economy within vital roles in healthcare, business, education, service industries, and more. But despite the value of child care within a healthy and vibrant city, the child care profession is largely still an undervalued and underpaid occupation, and one that has been in crisis before and even more so since the COVID-19 pandemic began.
Within the Department of Education and Early Learning, a team of CCAP Education Specialists support child care providers partnering with the City of Seattle as part of the Child Care Assistance Program (CCAP). Many of Seattle’s child care businesses, including both home-based and center-based care, are owned and operated by Black, Indigenous, immigrant, or refugee women of color, and DEEL’s CCAP Education Specialists work closely with these providers to improve their experience contracting with the City. Education Specialists (or Ed Specs, as they are sometimes referred to) work closely with DEEL’s Change Team, part of the City’s Race and Social Justice Initiative, to advance equity in child care by providing resources and technical assistance to navigate systemic barriers and building greater access to high-quality, affordable childcare for Seattle families.[Read more…]
Today, King County Executive Dow Constantine and Seattle Mayor Bruce Harrell joined child care partners to announce the opening of applications for the 2022 Child Care Retention Payments, a one-time retention bonus payment to child care workers across the county, as well as a new round of stabilization grants for Seattle providers provided by the Seattle Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL). A total of $7.4 million in joint funding will be available for eligible providers through both opportunities, including $5 million from the King County Best Starts for Kids levy and $2.4 million from the Seattle JumpStart Payroll Expense Tax. Payments are expected to reach more than 9,000 child care workers across the county.
This represents the third round of funding DEEL has provided in support of child care providers during the COVID-19 pandemic. In early 2021, DEEL provided more than 500 grants totaling $2.3 million to help stabilize child care businesses in Seattle, many of which had remained open from the earliest days of the pandemic. In September 2021, a second round of supports was opened, providing $2.9 million in recognition payments to more than 3,500 child care workers.[Read more…]
By Ciara Pickering, DEEL COVID-19 Communications Advisor
With the rise in COVID-19 cases this spring and the emergence of new variants, it’s more important than ever to protect ourselves and our communities by getting vaccinated. New information about COVID-19 and the vaccine continues to surface and many people find themselves with a lot of questions, especially about vaccines for kids ages 5 – 11. In collaboration with Public Health – Seattle & King County and Seattle Public Schools, DEEL has produced the Handbook for Health Heroes, a comic book guide to help answer families’ questions about the COVID-19 vaccine for kids.[Read more…]
DEEL Awards Nearly $3M to Child Care Workers in Appreciation of Their Service to Seattle Families Throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic
City will provide over 3,500 Workers up to $835 By New Year’s Holiday
SEATTLE (December 7) – Building on a series of investments to support child care providers throughout the pandemic, Dr. Dwane Chappelle, Director of the Seattle Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL), joined members of the Seattle City Council, child care workers and education partners to announce $2.9 million in Child Care Recognition Payments as part of the Seattle Rescue Plan. Over 3,500 workers will receive a one-time payment in appreciation of their important service provided to Seattle children and families throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Workers at 537 programs serving approximately 20,000 children citywide will receive payments. Sixty-nine percent of payment recipients, which include both center-based and Family Child Care providers, identify as Black, Indigenous, or People of Color. Fifty-nine percent of the programs are located in historically under-resourced neighborhoods in southeast and southwest Seattle.[Read more…]
DEEL’s fall 2021 newsletter is here! DEEL is proud to welcome our City’s brilliant scholars back to classrooms for in-person learning. In this issue, we share stories about how the education community continues to support students throughout the pandemic from early learning to postsecondary. We also kick off the new school year by sharing information about resources that support student success and wellness including the Child Care Assistance Program, Seattle Preschool Program enrollment, School-Based Health Center services, and more![Read more…]
Are you an administrator or child care provider at a DCYF-licensed family child care or center based program located within the boundaries of the City of Seattle? If so, you may be eligible to apply for a child care recognition payment!
In appreciation of the valuable work Seattle home-based and center-based child care workers have been performing during the COVID-19 public health emergency, the City of Seattle allocated over $2.9M from the Seattle Rescue Plan to offer child care workers a recognition payment. The Seattle Department of Education and Early Learning (DEEL) is proud to partner with Child Care Resources (CCR) to distribute these funds. The Seattle Childcare Business Coalition (SCBC), in collaboration with the Economic Opportunity Institute, was instrumental in the development of this opportunity and passionately advocated on behalf of childcare workers.[Read more…]