The temperature is rising, and spring is in the air! As we edge slowly out of winter and increasingly spend more time outside our homes, we cannot dismiss the COVID-19 pandemic that continues to hang on. We are more than a year into this pandemic, and our second Spring Break season since the pandemic started is upon us. In 2021, Spring Break feels different than in 2020, when COVID-19 community restrictions first started and fear began to rise. Now, COVID-19 infection rates are going down in many communities and vaccines are becoming available and being distributed, which gives us hope. We seem to be turning the pandemic corner and starting to win the battle against COVID-19. However, we still need to do our best to reduce the risk of increasing the spread.
La salud y la seguridad en los entornos de cuidado infantil son fundamentales en todo momento. La pandemia de COVID-19 ha ampliado las responsabilidades de los proveedores de cuidado infantil para garantizar que el medio ambiente sea seguro y saludable. Un nuevo recurso de CCAoA, La salud ambiental y la seguridad en los entornos del cuidado infantil: Consideraciones durante los brotes virales, destaca importantes preocupaciones de salud y seguridad ambiental para los entornos de cuidado infantil tanto en la familia como en el centro. ¡Puedes encontrar el recurso completo aquí! A continuación, se incluye un breve resumen del recurso.
Winter break is right around the corner! 2020’s winter break (like most things) is impacted by COVID-19. The pandemic continues to sweep the nation. As the weather has turned colder and people have retreated indoors, virus transmission rates are soaring to levels not yet seen since the pandemic began. We all must do our part to reduce community transmission of the virus that causes COVID-19. That means that this year’s winter break may look and feel a little different for children and their families.
Health and safety in child care settings are critical at all times. The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified child care providers’ responsibilities in ensuring that the environment is safe and healthy. A new resource from CCAoA, Environmental Health and Safety in Child Care Settings: Considerations During Viral Outbreaks, highlights important environmental health and safety concerns for both family and center-based child care settings. You can find the full resource here! A brief summary of the resource follows.
Financial Impact and Federal Relief
The COVID-19 impact on child care programs is pervasive and multi-faceted. Child care business owners have faced abrupt program closures or reduced operational capacity. Programs that stayed open, including those mandated to only serve essential workers, have had to front much higher than usual operational costs. These extra costs include cleaning and disinfection supplies, health screening resources, personal protective equipment, and environmental modifications to accommodate small group sizes and physical distancing in programs. Payroll costs also have surged as more staff is needed to conduct health screenings for children in care, clean throughout the day and supervise smaller groups of children.
The process of searching for child care is undeniably one of the most difficult processes for families with young children to navigate. We are excited to share with you a newly refreshed suite of on-the-go child care information brochures that help you talk with Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) agencies and providers when choosing safe and quality care.