September 2019              
In its August 2019 DEAR PROVIDER letter, OCFS outlined how its new, federally-required background check process will be implemented, effective 9/16/19.  A comprehensive background check will be required of prospective and existing operators, directors, employees, and volunteers at child care centers, school-age programs, group family and family providers, including persons age 18 or older living in group family and family provider programs.  The screening will involve:
  • a NYS criminal history record check
  • a national criminal record check
  • a search of the NYS Sex Offender Registry
  • a database check of the NYS Statewide Central Register of Child Abuse and Maltreatment
  • a search of the national sex offender registry
Additional background checks will be required of any individual who currently or in the last 5 years resided outside NYS.

Click here for the August 2019 DEAR PROVIDER letter.   Please read it immediately if you have not yet done so.

#2 - Free Back-to-School Immunizations  

The  Westchester
County Dep artment of Health will book appointments now for its free back-to-school vaccine clinics to assure children have the vaccines they need for school.

Click here to learn more
Click here to find a clinic near you
#3 - Smoke Alarm Recall 
As of July 10, 2019, Universal Security Instruments has recalled two of its smoke alarms: Model Number MI305S and MI3050SB.  A faulty switch on the detectors might fail to sound an alarm during a fire. To view more details on the recall, click here 
Westchester Child Care Community Forum: Creating the Child Care System We Need

Child care is getting more attention than ever, not only as a launch pad for children and a support for working parents, but also an economic driver and a key to future economic growth.   But it has to be high quality, and affordable to deliver those benefits.

Join us at this special event on  Tuesday, October 15th, from 6 to 8 pm at the Burke Rehab Hospital, to share your views and ideas with area elected officials.

More info to follow, but please save the date.
to the Latest New CDAs!
These early childhood professionals completed a Child Care Council CDA course and then went on to earn the Child Development Associate credential from the Council for Professional Recognition in Washington, DC. They worked hard to improve their knowledge about children and how to work with them.  The children in their care, their parents, and their programs are very fortunate to have such dedicated professionals working with them.

From our In-person Infant Toddler/Family Child Care CDA class , congratulations to:
  • Carla Morgan
  • Jaronia Fields
  • Sawudat Abraham
If you would like more info on the CDA credential or our Council's CDA classes, please go to:
This will give you the information you need. At the end, there is a form for you to fill out which will help us determine the next steps for you. At the end of the form, you will be able to ask us questions or tell us about your situation.

If you have received this information before, please email .
Apply NOW for Our
In-Person Infant Toddler 
CDA Credential Course 
First Class - Tuesday, September 24
This 120-hour course is the first step to becoming a CDA or Child Development Associate.  Thanks to a generous grant from the Westchester County Office for Women, the cost is only $50 for the course materials. 
This CDA is open to child care professionals who work with infants and/or toddlers in Westchester County child care centers and family/group family programs.     
Earning the CDA Credential™ has many advantages:
  • Advance your career
  • Meet job requirements
  • Reinforce your commitment to early childhood education
  • Increase your knowledge and skills for working with young children. 
  • Provide an appropriate program for children
  • Give parents peace of mind
  • Increase your confidence
Do not delay! 
Application deadline: September 5, 2019
  Click here for the course application. 
Click here for more information 
about the CDA Credential and the steps to receive it.

For more  information about the Council CDA course, go to  CDA Credential
Click here, to view the flyer 

Mail your application to:
Child Care Council of Westchester, Inc.
313 Central Park Avenue
Scarsdale, NY 10583
Attn: Idie Benjamin
fax it to 914-761-1957
or email to

Health Tip
  Preventing Child Stroke Deaths in Vehicles

Due to the increase in temperatures, it is extremely important for parents and caregivers of young children to recognize that leaving children unattended in a parked car, even for short periods, can cause heat strokes that can often be fatal.

Heatstroke is the leading cause of non-crash, vehicle related deaths for children under the age of 14. There was a total of 891 child heat stroke deaths from 1990 to 2018.

In 2018, 52 children died from heatstroke in hot cars across the United States.

The average number of U.S. child vehicular heat stroke deaths is 38 per year (one every 9 days).

Click here, to read more
Professional Development 
Fall Training Calendar
September-December 2019
Don't miss our great fall trainings! To see what we have in store, Click here to view our 2019 Fall Training Calendar. 
Regulations Reminder: 
417.11 (i)(22) 
Cleaning & Disinfecting 
(regulation is for all modalities)

All rooms, equipment, surfaces, supplies and furnishings accessible to children must be cleaned and then sanitized or disinfected, using an EPA registered product, as needed to protect the health of children, and in a manner consistent with the health care plan guidelines issued by the Office.
 Free Council Training: 
Provider Friends Network 

Family and Group Family Providers - Please join us for this free and fun training on September 28th from 9am-11am. This training is filled with many creative activities including music, finger plays and movement and can be adapted to pass along to children. 

For more information, contact Sarah Merrifield at
Tara Rosenblum (News 12) is 2019 "Dream Big" Master of Ceremonies

Great news! The wonderful Tara Rosenblum of News 12 Westchester has signed on to be the Master of Ceremonies for our Dream Big event on October 3rd! Tara has always been such a warm presence at Council events, and we are so excited that she will join us once again. Thank you, Tara!
#tararosenblum #daycare #childcare #westchesterevents

Join the celebration, register here
For inquiries or questions regarding the event, contact Dana Lawless, Director of Development at or (914)-761-3456 x 127.
Save the Date: 2019 Fall Early Childhood Conference 
Whether you're a teacher, assistant teacher, director, or educational coordinator, brand new or veteran, there's something for you at this year's fall conference, co-sponsored by the Westchester Chapter of NYAEYC.  Join us for a morning of interactive learning and networking, including 3.5 hours of training. 

Registration will open in early September.

For more information, please contact Carmelita Bota at (914)761-3456 x134 or email her at
 Welcome New & Renewed 
Child Care Programs!

Family Day Care Programs
Esperanza Hidalgo
The Sunrise to Sunset Daycare

SACC Programs
Program Opportunities with Enrichment Resources

SACC Programs
Great Opportunities for Activities & Leadership
YMCA of Central and Northern Westchester

Welcome New CACFP Participants
 Emilkis De La Cruz
Delmi Marroquin
  Cheyrl Williams
5 Reasons to Play with PlayDoh
It is FUN!!!!


2. It allows for creative exploration, investigation, and wonder. PlayDoh can be squished, flattened, and molded into shapes. It can be poked and rolled. Children can create animals, people, play food, and more.


3. It is educational! Playing with Play-Doh (whether it is bought or made by you) provides so many opportunities for learning that happen naturally.

  • It develops the small muscles of little hands and arms
  • It develops eye-hand coordination
  • It spurs creativity
  • It sparks language 

4. Playing with Play-Doh is calming and soothing. All that squeezing and rolling and pounding is great for stress release.

5. The fun and the learning increase when you add materials to use with the dough - rolling pins, tooth picks (not for very young children), toy silverware, containers, a garlic press, small figures, small sticks, kitchen tools (depending on the ages of the children), safety scissors, cookie cutters, leaves, straws, pine cones, stones, etc. etc.

National PlayDoh Day
This special day is observed annually on September 16th. Play-Doh inventor Joe McVicker originally sold this material as a wallpaper cleaner but the world had another use for his product. Play-Doh was inducted into the Toy Hall of Fame in 1998.   Here is an excerpt from the Hall of Fame induction found at
Make your own or buy a can of Play-Doh and let your imagination run wild. Use #NationalPlayDohDay to post on social media.
 JCC Mid-Westchester Family Fun Day 

When : Sunday, September 8th, 2019
Where: JCC of MidWestchester, Scarsdale 
Cost: Free 
For more information,  Click here
Watch Coco at Jefferson Valley Mall 
When : Friday, Sepember 27th, 6-8pm 
Where: Jeffer son Valley Mall, Yorktown Heights
Cost: Free 
For more information, Click here
  • OCFS announces changes
  • Free Back- to -School Immunizations 
  • Health Tip: Preventing Heat Stroke Deaths 
  • Provider Friends Network
  • Community Outreach 
  • 2019 "Dream Big" Master of Ceremonies Announcement
  • Children's Corner
  • Summertime Blues
  • What's Cooking
  • Family Fun and more
Provider Friends Network
Child Care Council of Westchester
313 Central Park Ave
Scarsdale, NY 10583
September 28, 2019 
For more information, contact Sarah Merrifield at

Dream Big 
The Whitby Castle
330 Boston Post Road
Rye, NY 10580
October 3, 2019
Click Here, to learn more

2019 Fall Early Childhood Conference
Shaarei Tikvah Synagogue
46 Fox Meadow Road
Scarsdale, NY 10583
October 18, 2019
For more information, contact Carmelita Bota at or visit our website

Council Office Closings 
All Day
Monday, September 2nd, 2019
Monday, October 7th, 2019

Early Closings ( 3:00pm)
Friday, August 30, 2019
We Love Our Community!
Summer fun in the sun while we spread the word about our services at Westchester's Screening Under the Stars. Thank you to the many parents that completed our parent child care survey. The information will be used to help the Council serve families better. 

We would love more feedback from you.  Please complete the below survey and feel free to share with all your parents at your program. 

Staff Testimonials 
"There are many reasons why I love working at the Council. The staff are friendly and helpful. In my short time working here, my CACFP colleagues are supportive and reliable. I also love our events and social gatherings, including "Dominick, The Singing Ice-Cream Man." - Jessica Cardenas, CACFP Case Manager.
"During my 5 months working for the Council, I learned a lot about child care and the importance of helping families receive affordable child care. I admire how my colleagues are able to balance work and fun. The workplace atmosphere is unexplainable. I am happy to work for the Council."- Jovanna Romero, Communications Associate. 
"Our newly-elected Board Members"
Welcome, Dr. Emily M. Koelsch

We are excited to welcome Emily to our Board of Directors.   Her experience as a pediatrician will be invaluable to all our efforts to support children and families.     
Welcome, Nidhi Kisson

We are thrilled to welcome Nidhi to our Board of Directors as well.  We have already seen her commitment to children and look forward to her contributions to the Council.    
Summertime Blues Dominick "The Singing Ice-Cream Man" is Back!

What a nice surprise! Dominick, "The Singing Ice-Cream Man" returned! We enjoyed delicious ice-cream, pleasant conversation and songs with his melodic voice! We can't wait until next summer. Thank you to our STAR Committee for organizing such great team bonding activities and events.
Free Books for You!  

We have THOUSANDS of new and "gently used" infant/toddler, preschool and school-age books available to give to Westchester programs. 
If you are interested in receiving FREE books for your program , please contact Jami Flynn at (914) 761-3456, ext. 136
Please provide the following information when you call or email:
  • Name of program
  • Type of program (Center, Family Child Care, Group Family Child Care, School-Age, Legally Exempt)
  • Phone number and address
  • Total number of children enrolled including the number of infants/toddlers, preschoolers, and school-age children.
We're Hiring! 
Come to work at the Child Care Council and make a difference in the life of a child.  We currently have the following openings:  

For more information contact Juanita Pope at (914)-761-3456 x106  or  
Reduced Mid-Year Membership Rates 

 Benefits Include:
  • Valuable discounts on workshops, on-site training and conferences 
  • Listing on our website, including a link to your website
  • Free postings on the Council's job bank
  • Membership certificate to post at your site
  • Printed Council Training Calendar
  • Early announcements of special programs and opportunities  
  • Free Notary Public Services
  • Free Members Only networking events
  • 7.5% off Lakeshore Orders 
  • Complimentary Council 2019 Calendar
  • Participation in our membership referral program 
  • Exclusive member only annual events  

Opportunities to Connect with Colleagues!
Regular meetings at the Council for family providers, early childhood directors, and school age directors provide opportunities for you to learn, share resources and support one another. These meetings are also an avenue to increase your knowledge. Each one includes a training with a certificate accepted by OCFS.

Providers Network
This group for registered family and licensed group family providers meets 4 times a year.  For information about the network, contact Sarah Merrifield, CCCW Infant Toddler Specialist at or (914)-761-3456 ext. 107.

Westchester Early Childhood Directors Association
The Association meets the 3rd Tuesday of the month from 1:00- 3:00pm. Contact Howard Milbert at Ossining Children's Center at (914) 941-0230 or Dawn Meyerski at Mt. Kisco Child Care Center at (914) 241-2135 or for details.

School Age Directors Network
The Network meets the 3rd  Tuesday of the month from 10:00am-12:00pm. Contact Chris Cornacchia at (914)693-6686 or email or contact Gina D'Amore at (914)835-4271 or email

Join the network today!

Please note the networking groups do not meet in August. 

The Council is pleased to host these groups. We encourage you to attend their meetings.
What's Cooking?

Spinach Artichoke Zucchini Bites

  • 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
  • 2/3 c. shredded mozzarella
  • 1/4 c. freshly grated Parmesan
  • 1/2 c. canned artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
  • 1/2 c. frozen spinach, thawed and drained
  • 2 tbsp. sour cream
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • Pinch crushed red pepper flakes
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 medium zucchini, cut into 1/2" rounds
  1. Preheat oven to 400° and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper. In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, mozzarella, Parmesan, artichokes, spinach, sour cream, garlic, and crushed red pepper. Season with salt and pepper. 
  2. Spread about a tablespoon of cream cheese mixture on top of each zucchini coin.
  3. Bake until zucchini is tender and cheese is melty, 15 minutes. For more color, broil on high, 1 to 2 minutes.
  4. Enjoy
For more information on reimbursements for meals and snacks, contact Latoya Ramsey, Provider Services Coordinator at (914)-761-3456 x 118 or email her at  

Community Resources


United Way's 2-1-1 is a free, confidential, multilingual information and referral helpline open 365 days a year, 9am-7pm.

United Way's 2-1-1 call specialists can give you information about things such as:
  • Food Assistance
  • Housing assistance and shelters
  • Abuse prevention
  • Elder care
  • Mental health services
  • Recycling regulations
  • Services for people with disabilities
  • How to become a foster parent
  • Where to get medical help and more
Learn more:
Support the Council
Many easy ways to help!

Did you know TD Bank has an Affinity Program? 

TD Bank will make an annual contribution to the Council based on the activity of all participating members' TD accounts. If you are already a customer, or wish to open an account, visit any of their locations and ask to be included in the Affinity Program to benefit the Council.
Support the Council while You Shop!

Shop Amazonsmile and select the Child Care Council of Westchester as your charity, we will receive 5% of the cost of your purchases.   So get started on your holiday shopping today and thank you!

How Delicious It Is to Give Back!

Shake Shack's Hartsdale location contributes  5% of sales of their Pie Oh My Concretes to the Council, so that we may continue to fight for quality early care and education for all children in Westchester.   Make sure you stop by and enjoy their ever changing Pie Oh My Concretes to support the Council!