LGK and VTAEYC statement on Governor Scott's proposal to restructure CDD
Let's Grow Kids and the Vermont Association for the Education of Young Children (VTAEYC) have heard from many early childhood educators and early childhood champions about Governor Scott’s proposed restructuring of the services currently provided by the Child Development Division and transitioning most child care oversight to the Agency of Education, with some responsibilities housed across other departments at the Agency of Human Services. The restructuring that the governor is proposing is in keeping with his philosophy of taking a “cradle to career” approach to education.
Based on the feedback and questions we have received, we know there are mixed feelings related to this proposal.
We recognize that this restructuring proposal may have some merit, especially as the state continues to develop an appreciation for the important role child care and early childhood educators play as part of the continuum of education, but we ask that the Administration and Legislature take the time needed to engage in a study and planning process.
We also agree with the Secretary of Education’s recent acknowledgement that any restructuring should preserve the current mix of programs (family child care homes, centers, public school) serving young children.
The Legislature is beginning consideration of H.171, a bill that would make sweeping changes toward creating an affordable, equitable, high-quality child care system in Vermont. Importantly, the bill includes an analysis, led by Building Bright Futures in conjunction with experts and advisors from the field, to evaluate and make recommendations on existing governance and administrative structures. This bill provides an excellent vehicle to analyze the governor’s proposal in the context of a broader analysis, in a manner that includes broad input from those most impacted.
Ultimately, any decision about governance must be based on creating the desired outcomes for children, their families, and the early childhood educators who form the workforce that upholds all other workforces in our state.
On Monday, February 22 (1 PM–3 PM), Building Bright Futures will offer you an opportunity to learn more about the governor’s proposed restructuring from Education Secretary Dan French and DCF Commissioner Sean Brown. They will be presenting the restructuring plan at the Building Bright Futures State Advisory Council meeting. Click here to register for the February 22 council meeting to hear their proposal.
For those who can’t attend the session, the presentation will be recorded and available on the BBF website the week of the February 28.
Other ways to be involved:
- Follow H.171, a bill introduced last week relating to the governance and financing of Vermont’s child care system;
- Sign on in support of Let’s Grow Kids’ 3-year policy agenda; and
- If you're an early childhood educator, add your voice to VTAEYC's effort to Advance ECE as a Recognized Profession.
by Let's Grow Kids and Vermont Association for the Education of Young Children