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Early Childhood Development | The Latest Newsletter 12.12.2­023

Happy Holidays! At the Office of Early Childhood Development, we’re grateful for all you have done to support children and families this year and we’re honored to have had the opportunity to partner with states, tribes, territories, communities, and organizations across the country. Before we ring in 2024, I'd like to share just a few highlights from this past year.

We published proposed changes to regulations for both the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) and Head Start. The CCDF proposed changes are designed to lower families’ child care costs and increase child care options, improve child care provider payment rates and practices, and make enrollment in the child care subsidy program easier and faster for families. The Head Start proposed changes are currently out for public comment through January 19th. If enacted, the new rules would mean increased salaries for Head Start staff and quality improvements for Head Start programs throughout the U.S.

We launched the National Early Care and Education Workforce Center, the first of its kind in the country, to fund research and technical assistance for states, municipalities, territories, and tribal countries looking to promote the recruitment and retention of a diverse and talented early care and education workforce.

We announced new Tribal Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program, funding totaling over $24 million to 34 tribes and tribal organizations nationwide to create culturally grounded, evidence-based home visiting programs within American Indian and Alaskan Native communities and representing a significant increase in Tribal MIECHV funding throughout the country.

We collaborated with the U.S. Department of Education on an updated joint policy statement supporting the inclusion of children with disabilities in early childhood programs to expand on and enhance the original statement from 2015. 

We are excited to continue collaboration with each and every one of you as we continue the momentum in 2024! I wish you, your families, and communities a peaceful holiday, if you are celebrating one, and a very Happy New Year.

With appreciation,
Katie Hamm, 
Deputy Assistant Secretary for Early Childhood Development 

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