Sign up for the Better Together Collaborative!

Better Together is an eight-month learning opportunity that strives to increase the health, safety, nutrition, and physical activity policies and practices in your program. Go NAPSACC provides the framework for this Learning Collaborative, working through four Go NAPSACC modules together as a cohort over the eight-month program, including recorded trainings, peer-to-peer interactive Zoom sessions, and coaching. Better Together provides you the training hours required for Level 3 & Level 4 of Paths to QUALITY, Licensing, and CACFP.  Collaboratives will meet virtually for Learning Sessions 1-3 with a hybrid option for Learning Session 4.

Better Together requests that programs with three or more employees have three (3) people participate in the Collaborative. The training will fulfill CACFP, Paths to QUALITY, and Licensing requirements for all three participants. Additionally, programs completing the learning opportunity receive $500 to use as the program sees fit. The Collaborative begins in September, so don’t miss out!

Complete this short Google form by Wednesday, September 30th to apply, and a member of SPARK Learning Lab Support Team will contact you.

SPARK Learning Lab looks forward to welcoming you to the Collaborative!

 

Applications are now open for SPARK Regional Advisory Councils!   

SPARK Learning Lab’s goal is to provide the best support possible to Indiana’s early childhood education and care professionals who work everyday to improve the lives of Hoosier children and families.

In order to achieve this goal we need input from professionals like you! The SPARK Regional Advisory Councils (RACs) provide vital feedback to ensure the success of our technical assistance approach.

Each of the RACs represent one of the state’s five Service Delivery Areas (SDAs) allowing members to provide insight on the successes and pain points of providers in their area of the state.

Councils provide feedback and recommendations to SPARK on:

  • Format and methods of technical assistance support
  • Areas where programs need support
  • Soliciting feedback from other programs in their region
  • Program and policy development

Council member responsibilities include:

  • Attend quarterly RAC meetings for your region
  • Provide information, advice, and other counsel to SPARK regarding services and needs within your SDA
  • Review materials shared by the SPARK team prior to each quarterly meeting
  • Make recommendations to be shared with SPARK Learning Lab and partners
  • Function as an Ambassador of SPARK Learning Lab

If you are interested in joining the RAC in your SDA, please complete the application by July 16, 2021.

Learn more and apply

Want to learn more about serving on a SPARK Regional Advisory Council?
Join us on Facebook Live!

We will be hosting live Q and A sessions with SPARK Program Director Mike Bachman on:

Thursday, June 24th @ 2:00pm EST
and
Wednesday, July 14th @ 11:00am EST

Questions? Contact RAC@indianaspark.com
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In this module family child care providers will explore the idea of play as both a right and need for children’s development and learning, developing an understanding of the various types of play and how the provider’s role moves through a spectrum to best support the child’s play.

In this module family child care providers will explore the idea of play as both a right and need for children’s development and learning, developing an understanding of the various types of play and how the provider’s role moves through a spectrum to best support the child’s play.

Register for the “Build, Learn, Grow Scholarship Fund Information Session,” available now on Indiana Learning Paths!

 

What is the Build, Learn, Grow Scholarship? For families with qualifying incomes (128%- 250% of the federal poverty level), classified as essential workers, the state of Indiana can cover 80% of tuition fees for kids up to age 12, including early learning, before-school, after-school, and summer learning programs. As an example, a family of four earning $66,000 per year will qualify for a Build, Learn, Grow scholarship. 

 

Remember that early childhood education and care and out-of-school-time workers are essential, so those with qualifying incomes can also apply to receive this scholarship for their children!

 

During this 30-minute session, you will learn about the scholarship process, how to determine family eligibility, and the process for submitting a claim for reimbursement to support the children of essential workers in your program.   

 

This session is required for programs that wish to accept scholarship funds and is available 24-7, so you can complete it when it is convenient for you.

 

To Register:

  1. Login or create a free account at ilead.in.gov
  2. Click the green “Start Your Indiana Learning Path” button
  3. Choose “Courses” from the menu on the left-hand side
  4. Search “Build, Learn, Grow Scholarship Fund Information Session” to register and start the course

 

 Get started now at ilead.in.gov

 

To stay up-to-date as additional program initiatives roll out, sign up for text alerts by texting the word UPDATES to 465437.

 

In this module, family childcare providers will explore the importance creating an environment that promotes mutual kindness and respect and supports children’s capacity to self-regulate and how to respond to behaviors that challenge our skills and abilities.

In this module, family childcare providers will explore the importance of social emotional development in young children and how having a strong connection between a caregiver and a child can facilitate this development

 

In this module, Family Childcare Providers will learn about how the expression of ideas that start in infancy build and transform from spoken to written language. We watch how gestures, play with rhymes and songs as well as books and drawing materials pave the way for reading and writing a few short years away.

In this module, Family Childcare Providers will learn about how the expression of ideas that start in infancy build and transform from spoken to written language. We watch how gestures, play with rhymes and songs as well as books and drawing materials pave the way for reading and writing a few short years away.

Research shows that high quality early childhood programs prepare children for future success in school, work and life. From birth through age 5 is the most important time for growth of the human brain. A child’s brain develops in response to the child’s experiences by building neurological networks in reaction to the environment.

A child’s experiences in a child care program can significantly contribute to that brain development and the future success of the child. High quality child care programs are essential, not only to Hoosier children, but also to their families and to the communities in which they live. Parents need stable, high quality care in order to be productive at work. They count on their child care provider to ensure that their child is safe, healthy and learning during those hours they must be at work. Our school systems need children who are entering school prepared and ready to succeed. Businesses need a high quality work force both now and in the future. In fact, studies have shown that high quality early childhood programs increase the graduation rate, reduce the future crime rate and can save up to sixteen dollars for every one dollar invested. High quality child care programs are essential to everyone.

In order to improve the quality of child care programs, states across the nation are using Quality Rating and Improvement Systems, such as the one here in Indiana, Paths to QUALITY™. Quality Rating and Improvement Systems assess the quality of care within a program, work to improve that quality level, and give families an easy to recognize symbol that makes the difficult decision of choosing child care easier. These systems also provide an accountability measure for funding and create an alignment between licensing, subsidy and quality across child care, Head Start and the Department of Education’s early learning guidelines.

Paths to QUALITY™ gives families an easy to recognize tool for selecting a child care program. Families can look for the Paths to QUALITY™ logo to determine what level their provider has achieved. Each level builds on the foundation of the previous one, resulting in significant quality improvements at each stage and in national accreditation at the highest level. The system validates child care programs for ongoing efforts to achieve higher standards of quality and provides incentives and awards for success. The four levels address:

For more information on Paths to QUALITY™, please visit http://www.childcareindiana.org.