Submission Deadline | First Friday of Each Month
February Alliance for Kids Council Meeting
Join us for the next Council meeting on February 6th from 2:20 - 4:00 pm. Our location will be the historic Penrose House in the Proby Room ( 1661 Mesa Avenue ). Colorado Children’s Campaign will present on this year’s legislative agenda impacting young children and families.

Colorado Shines Updates
Check your QRIS account for grant eligibility. Read More
This grant allows 18 months for new Level 2 programs to receive support to get ready for a rating. It also allows programs who are currently rated a Level 3, 4 or 5 to receive support to maintain their rating.
Prizes still available for programs achieving a Level 2!
Call 719.291.8112 for details.
Alternative Pathways to Colorado Shines Rating
Colorado Shines recognizes many additional ways that programs reach quality and allows these pathways to be recognized by giving them a Colorado Shines level rating. For more information, click here.
 From technical assistance with uploading documentation to navigating the rating process to celebrating your rating results, we are here for you! 
Contact Kelly Hurtado , QI Manager, at 719.291.9315.
Enhance your Family Partnerships to increase your Colorado Shines points with supports through AFK. Available to sites currently holding a Colorado Shines Quality Improvement MOU.
Important! The Child Care Facility search is being integrated into the Colorado Shines website. Visit: ColoradoShines.com/search. The Colorado Shines' search results not only include quality levels achieved by child care programs, but also provide detailed licensing information. Read more >>
The   Colorado.gov Child Care Facility search will be phased out
and will no longer be available by the end of the 2018 calendar year.
When your Colorado Shines rating decreases, so does your programs
CCCAP reimbursement rate. Don’t let your rating expire! 
Call 291.8112 for rating support today!
Family Child Care Provider Resources
CCCAP Supports for ECE Centers
and Family Child Care Providers
El Paso County families receiving a CCCAP subsidy have ¼ of the choices that other families have when it comes to child care. AFK is committed to ensuring that each and every child and family has access to the care that they need. To assist programs that gain a CCCAP contract, AFK is offering the following:

$300 Stipend for Programs Gaining New CCCAP Contract
Limited number of stipends available - first come/first serve.
Call us to find out more (719.291.8112).
one-stop shop for accessing QRIS, PDIS, and ATS.

Do you need further assistance with the ATS?
Contact Kelly Hurtado at 719.291.9315
Opportunities for Early Childhood Leaders
Directors Forum - Join us on Facebook!
Looking for even more connection and support as a director? AFK is facilitating a closed Facebook group designed for directors of centers and family child care homes to come together online about issues that matter to YOU. To learn more or join, contact Kelly Hurtado or call 719.291.9315.
Directors Roundtable Meeting
February 21, 2019 | 12—1:30 pm
Location TBD
We will have lunch, networking, and a topic for discussion.
$8 per person | Light lunch will be served. | Click to Register
McCormick Center for Early Childhood Leadership
The center offers a wealth of information for early childhood leaders including a clearing house of resources specific to the field. Check it out here!
Professional Development
February 23 | Part 1: 10 am-12 pm | Part 2: 12:30-2:30 pm
Click here for flyer and registration details.
Culture of Wellness in Preschools (COWP) is offering FREE two-hour professional development training for home- and center-based programs interested in learning how to implement healthy eating and physical activity policies. Click here to view flyer.
FREE Training | Motheread and Fatheread
February 6 th – 8 th | 9 am-4 pm at Tim Gill Center
Alliance for Kids is partnering with Colorado Humanities to provide a FREE three day Institute to train educators in Motheread/Fatheread. In addition to the free Institute for you or your staff, there may be implementation support available to provide your first six-week parent training. It’s not only a wonderful early language and literacy opportunity, but a great way to build relationships and increase parent engagement. Click here for flyer or for details and registration, click here.
If you are interested in Pyramid Plus Approach Training, please contact Tina Fennell to be placed on the wait list for future local training offerings.
Attention ALL Early Childhood Programs
Do you want to increase child engagement during circle time?
Learn how to promote early language and literacy, child development and school readiness, and community building by incorporating playful music and movement activities into your circle time!
Please note : Learning supports will include the Music Play for Story Time and Beyond Training and FREE follow-up coaching for teachers and administrators.
For more information, please contact:
Erika Cincotta , Early Language and Literacy Specialist | 719.466.9562
Session D | March - June ( WED/SAT) | Click to Register
Session E | March - June (Saturdays Only) | Click to Register
Get training aligned and approved through PDIS
Click here for details, email Erica Evans, or call 719.233.0770.

Coaches Corner
Reflective Supervision
Are you a coach in El Paso County that is in need of Reflective Supervision? Please contact Kelly Hurtado to find out more about local opportunities to engage in this professional development for coaches.

College Credit Through the University of Colorado at Denver
Did you know that you can get college credit through UCD for the Relationship-Based Professional Development class that you took prior to May 2018? Click here for more information!

Interested in Becoming a Credentialed Coach? 
Click here to register for the upcoming Relationship Based Professional Development Class . The additional requirements for Colorado Coaching Credentials can be found at cocoaches.net . If you have questions or need assistance, email or call Kelly Hurtado at 719.291.9315.

Coaching Credential Renewal Application Checklist
Is it time to renew your Early Childhood Coaching Credential?  Level 1 coaching credentials must be renewed every three years. Level 2 and 3 applications must be renewed every five years.  The Coaching Credential Application Checklist  guides individuals through the renewal process and helps to monitor the completion of required tasks and documentation for your application. It is important to remember that a renewal does not require an application for a higher credential level.
Keep in mind, your coaching credential will remain in good standing as long as the complete renewal application is submitted for processing by the credential expiration date. The credential processing timeline is unchanged.  Applications received by the 15th of the month will be processed by the 15th of the following month. 

Coaching Improves Professional Development
Learn more about the benefits of coaching and what approaches work best for instructional coaches in the article “Primetime for Coaching: Improving Instructional Coaching In Early Childhood Education."

CO Early Childhood Professional Credential &
Coaching Points Update
Visit the Colorado Coaching Consortium website for details.
For credential resources, click here.
Licensing & Pre-Licensing
Starting October 25, 2018, fingerprinting required for background checks will no longer be offered at the Colorado Springs Police Department. All fingerprinting will be processed through two vendors, IdentoGO and Colorado Fingerprinting . For instructions to help navigate the IdentoGO site, click here. For IdentoGO FAQs, click here .

Questions or concerns about this new process can be directed to the Background Investigations Unit at 1-800-799-5876 or
New Pre-Licensing Classes are Available
Pre-Licensing for Exempt Providers:
Rules, Regulations & Business Rules

For more Pre-Licensing info, click here or download flyer .
February 20: Responding to your Report of Inspections
March 20: Providers Choice
April 17: Submitting Changes to your License to the Department
May 15: Getting Ready for Summer
June 19: No Forum

6:30 - 8:30 pm | AFK Conference Room | 2335 Robinson Street
Effective December 18th - New IREE Caseload Assignments
For a list sorted by zip code and your new licensing specialist and their contact information, click here. For more details, visit the IREE website .
Provider Resources
The ECHO Seed Site Grant Application is officially live!
The selected Seed Grant Sites will receive comprehensive landscape design assistance to re-imagine their outdoor spaces, $5,000 towards the installation of a naturalized outdoor learning environment, ongoing training, and technical assistance. Applications are due by 5:00 p.m. on Monday, February 11. Interested child care providers can learn more, download an application, and register for an informational webinar here: https://www.nwf.org/ECHO/Connect.

For questions or to learn more, please email 
echo@nwf.org or call 303-441-5145.
You can pay for this conference with your CSQI Funds!

Registration for the 2019 Rocky Mountain Early Childhood Conference is now open! With over 150 sessions, there’s sure to be something for every early childhood professional. The conference will take place March 1-2 at the Sheraton Hotel in downtown Denver. 

Register here and visit the conference website at  www.rmecconference.com for more information.
Child Behavior Supports
Are you struggling to meet the unique behavioral needs of a child?
Would you like help creating a plan to promote success at
home, school, or in a community setting?
Contact Early Childhood Services at The Resource Exchange
 719.577.9190 | View Flyer
Reverse 9-1-1 Emergency Notification System
Updating your Provider Information - Made EASY!
Licensed providers… Keep your information current in the State database by updating your site information when it’s most convenient for you. Take our quick online survey ! Your response removes you from your Early Childhood Council’s semi-annual call list and your update ensures you receive important notices and information from the State.
The form is also on our website or download the form ,
fill it out, and email it to Alliance for Kids
Teaching Resilience
by Chelsea Lee Smith
If we want our children to stand up to the inevitable challenges they will face in the future and keep going despite disappointment or frustration, we need to help our children develop resilience. This means they need to practice coping skills, and therefore need some challenges to practice these skills with.
Time for a dental check up?
Health First Colorado is Colorado’s Medicaid program. It provides dental benefits to enrolled children age 20 and under. Children enrolled in the full state plan have a wide range of benefits with no co-pays or out of pocket expenses.
To find out more visit www.DentaQuest.com/Colorado
Choosing Quality Child Care Matters!
Colorado Shines Child Care Referral at
Mile High United Way  
1-877-338-2273 | M-F, 8-5, or chat online .
Text childcarereferrals to 898-211

NEW! Fill out an intake form and send it to
for a list of child care providers.
Alliance for Kids welcomes Tina Fennell as the Quality Improvement Assistant & Navigator. Tina comes to us with local non-profit experience and has a strong commitment to serving those in her community. Tina will be completing provider updates, managing training registration, and assisting programs with quality improvement spending. Tina can be reached at FFennell@allianceforkids.org or 719.291.8112.

Welcome back Bernie McCarron, our new Health & Well-Being Specialist. Many of you will remember Bernie as our Parenting Matters Specialist or as the Culture of Wellness Family Specialist. Bernie comes to Alliance for Kids with a wealth of experience engaging families and programs in wellness and parenting initiatives. Bernie can be contacted at BMcCarron@allianceforkids.org or 719.659.7198.
New Proposed Legislation and
Budget Agenda Items for 2019 Session
Read more>>

Colorado Children's Campaign
Shares Highlights as 2019 Session Launches
The Colorado General Assembly launched into work this week with bills introduced and a State of the State address from new Gov. Jared Polis. Each week of the 2019 session Colorado Children's Campaign will update you with the latest on legislation impacting kids with our weekly Capitol Updates. Also this year, we'll bring you weekly video summary from Children's Campaign staff for those who want the quick version (click the image above). And if you want to dive more deeply, we invite you to subscribe to our new podcast, The West Steps . Read more>>

  • In their opening remarks, President of the Senate Leroy Garcia and Speaker of the House KC Becker  expressed excitement in welcoming new and returning legislators. The emphasis of their remarks was similar, urging members to create bipartisan solutions that work for everyone. They articulated past successes including the increased access to affordable housing, supports to address the high cost of child care and several others. The Speaker and President also listed challenges facing all Coloradans including high health care costs, access to quality public early childhood and K-12 education, lack of paid family leave, the opioid crisis, and wage disparity. Their remarks ended with a positive outlook for what could be accomplished this session and an encouragement to work together for all Coloradans. Read more>>

  • New Report: Voters want lawmakers to deliver for kids and their families By Beza Taddess: First Five Years Fund's sixth year of national polling shows public support for investing in quality early childhood education from birth through age five remains strong. Now is the time for policymakers at the state and federal levels to harness the overwhelming bipartisan support for this issue and work across the aisle to find solutions that support America's youngest learners. In fact, Democrats and Republicans alike expect all lawmakers to work together to get things done—and investing in early childhood education opportunities remains a rare issue that has strong support across parties. Read more>>
Find data and research on child health, early childhood education and development, K-12 education,track legislation and policies affecting Colorado's kids. Learn about outreach efforts, fundraising, and advocacy events, as well as efforts being undertaken by the It's About Kids and Circle of Friends networks.

COMMUNITY INFORMATION
  Please Note: Events and Training listed here are NOT facilitated by Alliance for Kids. For questions or to register you must contact the person or organization running the program directly. We will post flyers and notices for 2-3 weeks in our Community Section.
Flu season is coming!

Residents of Colorado have access to the statewide Prescription Assistance Program (PAP) . Free, discount prescription drug card coupons are available and provide savings of up to 75%. Print and share the Colorado Drug Card Flu Flyer and the Colorado Flu Shot Flyer. 
Interested in receiving free bilingual Colorado Drug Cards to share with families and you community? Contact Deb Adler, Outreach Program Director at   dadler@coloradodrugcard.com .
The Pikes Peak Small Business Development Center offers training and consulting with local business experts for existing businesses as well as those looking to start businesses. This is a great resource for early childhood owners and directors to connect with consultants, workshops, and resources related to running a successful small business.
2019 Minority Business Enterprise & Diversity Summit
To remain competitive in today’s global economy, businesses must be innovative and creative when it comes to maintaining diversity to remain competitive on the regional and global stage. The 2019 Minority Business Enterprise & Diversity Summit: Winning Through Inclusion will provide businesses the opportunity to explore tools and resources necessary to build diverse businesses. The summit will also provide a valuable opportunity for attendees to network together and grow in their knowledge of diversity and inclusion.
Division of Early Childhood for the Council for Exceptional Children

  Offerings from Qualistar
Discounts for ECE Professionals... Kaplan and Lakeshore  
 
Assuring Better Child Health & Development | Sign Up for Updates


STATE INFORMATION & RESOURCES
CDHS Joins in the First Statewide Education Sector Partnership 
Education is the fourth largest employer in Colorado and plays a critical role in driving the state economy forward. To recognize this, the Colorado Workforce Development Council launched the first statewide education sector partnership. The partnership will identify actions needed at the state level to strengthen the education industry, from early childhood to higher education, and serve as a statewide connection point. 
Watch the video below for a special message from Reggie Bicha, Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Human Services, Katy Anthes, Commissioner of Education and Dan Baer, Executive Director of the Department of Higher Education.
Child Care Market Rate Survey Results
Federal rule requires states to conduct a child care market rate survey every three years as a condition of receiving federal funding from the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF). Market rate surveys help states establish child care subsidy rates that are high enough to allow low-income working families to enter the child care market and afford equal access to a range of care.
In Colorado, the Office of Early Childhood (OEC) in the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) sets rates for child care subsidies paid out through the Colorado Child Care Assistance Program (CCCAP) across the state. This effort to identify child care market prices has two primary goals.
  • The first goal is to inform the rates reimbursed for child care through the Colorado Child Care Assistance Program (CCCAP) and to provide a benchmark for setting current subsidy rates in order to meet the federal definition of equal access. State legislation enacted in 2018 (HB18-1335) further elevates the importance of the market rate study by requiring the allocation of CCCAP funds to be based on a formula which combines the estimated eligible population and appropriate reimbursement rates.

  • The second goal relates to the broader mission of the OEC. Families across the state depend on the availability of affordable child care every day, whether or not they qualify for CCCAP. The results of this study provide vital information on the affordability of child care as well as an indication of how well the markets for that care are functioning.

New Criminal Background Check Results Notification Process

Licensing Fee Changes go into Effect July 1


Are You Prepared for an Emergency?
 The first step is identifying the types of events to prepare for - Read more>

NEW! Online Injury Reporting Form
The Division of Early Care and Learning is launching a new Online Injury Reporting System. Learn more>
NEW! Forms for Child Abuse and Neglect Records Checks
Fillable forms are available on the Office of Early Childhood website. Learn more>

New Resources for Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation 
The Center of Excellence has recently developed a variety of new resources to support Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Consultation, including resources related to maternal depression and supporting families affected by substance use disorders. To access these resources click here.

Click here  to subscribe to COEC emails

Update to Food Safety Regulations
Effective January 1, 2019
Child care programs that do not hold a Colorado Retail Establishment License (RFE) are subject to follow food code requirements. These requirements include the Rules Governing the Health and Sanitation of Child Care Facilities in the State of Colorado and Colorado Retail Food Establishment Regulations. To better align with the United States Good and Drug Administration National Food Code, these regulations have been updated. The new regulations will go into effect January 1, 2019. 
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has issued  this memo , which includes additional details. Should you have any questions regarding this notice, please contact the  Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment  at 303-692-3645 or   cdphe_iepu@state.co.us , or your  Local Public Health Agenc y.  

Questions? Contact: cdphe.dcdimmunization@state.co.us   
 
Radon Requirements for Child Care Facilities - Click here