Boise Child Care Stakeholder committee holds first meeting

This spring, Idaho AEYC worked with the City of Boise to form an exciting new advisory committee. The Boise Child Care Stakeholder committee’s central goal is to help the city meet the needs of both parents and child care providers. The group will provide input on challenges facing the industry and offer direction on licensing rules and regulations.

Meet the Preschool Collaborative: Nampa

The Nampa Early Childhood Learning Center (NECLC) is a developmental preschool serving about 180 students. Most of the children enrolled in the program are eligible for special education services. Now, with a Preschool the Idaho Way planning grant, NECLC will start expanding its capacity with plans to eventually serve all interested families in the Nampa School District. The immediate goal is to add a class of 3- and 4-year-olds for the upcoming school year.

Meet the Preschool Collaborative: Sandpoint and Ponderay

In West Bonner County, Storybook Cottage LLC – the nonprofit arm of Priest River-based Children’s Learning World LLC – plans to partner with Lee Pesky Learning Center, Parents as Teachers, local libraries, school districts and businesses to offer free preschool for 4-year-olds in the area.

“We have had a lot of support, and the more the community sees that we offer a real quality program, we will be receiving even more support!” said Tana Vanderholm of Storybook Cottage.

Congratulations to our 2019 Power to the Profession Award Winners!

Idaho AEYC is thrilled to recognize Jeanné Hayden and Heather Lee for their passionate and innovative work to advance early childhood education in Idaho. They will receive their Power to the Profession Awards during Idaho AEYC’s Professional Development Institute on June 15.

Meet the Preschool Collaborative: Kuna

Since 2015, a Kuna collaborative called Get Ready to Learn has focused on supporting and empowering parents, leveraging the community and working with local early learning programs to prepare more children for school. Now, with a planning grant from Idaho AEYC and guidance from the Preschool the Idaho Way toolkit, Get Ready to Learn and its community partners plan to identify the number of Kuna children not enrolled in preschool and learn more about the barriers families face.

Week of the Young Child is here!

The Week of the Young Child is a time to recognize the importance of quality early learning experiences and acknowledge the educators and caregivers working on behalf of our youngest Idahoans. When young children learn through play and have stable, interactive relationships with adults, they build the social and emotional skills needed to succeed throughout life.

Q&A with Ben Kincheloe, Nampa Early Childhood Learning Center

While at a brainstorming session about early learning resources in the Nampa School District this afternoon, Idaho AEYC’s Preschool the Idaho Way Collaborative Director Erika Lewis sat down with Ben Kincheloe, principal of the Nampa Early Childhood Center. The developmental preschool currently serves about 180 students in six classrooms at a single location, but it has plans to expand its pre-K options to even more students. Here’s what Kincheloe had to say during a quick Q&A.

Gov. Brad Little records Week of the Young Child PSA

Governor Brad Little visited Hawthorne Elementary School’s preschool students on March 1 for Dr. Suess story time to celebrate Read Across America. While he was there, he recorded a PSA for the Week of the Young Child, a nationwide celebration coming up April 8 to 12 that focuses on the importance of early learning and the needs of our youngest children and their families.

Idaho AEYC offers grants to support development of community preschools

With the launch of its Preschool the Idaho Way project last fall, Idaho AEYC released an in-depth toolkit that guides communities and individuals through the process of creating local early learning collaboratives and developing high-quality preschool opportunities. Now, it is offering grants to support the planning phase outlined in the toolkit. The grants will range from $5,000 to $10,000 and support the development of an actionable plan to create, expand or enhance a community’s preschool programs for children ages 4 to 5. A second grant opportunity, for implementation of those plans, will open later this year.

Early Learning Day on February 6!

Children from local programs will participate in BLOCK Fest®, a research-based, interactive exhibit developed in Idaho that teaches parents and educators about the impact of early learning through play. Idaho AEYC and other organizations will also oversee activities – including playdough and puzzles – and be on hand to discuss the many skills children develop through hands-on experiences.

New statewide poll confirms widespread support for early childhood education

A solid majority of Idahoans support state investment in early childhood education – even if it means paying more in taxes, according to Boise State’s University’s latest public policy survey. The results align with findings from a 2017 poll, which showed that Idaho voters and parents of young children believe the early years of life are important in a child’s brain development and that the state should be doing more to support early learning opportunities.