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July Newsletter

Save the Date! Early Learner Summit

Innovation during a Crisis; Workforce Behind the Workforce

Early Learner SD is happy to announce its second annual Early Learner Summit happening October 21st and 22nd in Rapid City, SD. We will be releasing more information and an official registration soon. What you can expect: gathering of Early Learner Stakeholders from across SD, a tour or two, and legislative connections and conversations. 

ELSD In The News

Co-Authored Op-ed featuring early learning


We are happy to have a wonderful co-authored op-ed between the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank and Monument Health, speaking to the importance of early learning in South Dakota. To read the full article, click the link below. 

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SDPB Highlights Early Learning Communities in South Dakota 

On July 1st, SDPB released a story discussing a 'A new approach to early learning hopes to improve access'. 

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Early Learner Community Updates


Our Huron Community has added one of its local preschools to the list of 'Exemplary Preschools' with the Preschool Levels of Excellence. Click below for the full article - way to go Huron! 

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DSS Updates

  • The Department of Social Services, Child Care Services (CCS) provides ongoing grant opportunities to help with the purchase of high-quality items in supporting the development of infants and toddlers in licensed child care programs. This includes indoor and outdoor equipment or manipulatives such as child-size tables and chairs, safe places to crawl and climb; etc. Applications and additional information can be found at https://dss.sd.gov/childcare/
  • DSS will be conducting stakeholder feedback/listening sessions related to the ARPA discretionary funds this summer and more details will be made available soon related to specific times/locations. These opportunities will include in person, virtual, and also include some survey opportunities. The opportunities for feedback will include a broad audience of stakeholders including parents, providers, community members, legislators, business owners and other stakeholders. DSS will be sending out more communication on this later in July. –
  • The final ARPA Stabilization grant award will be distributed to providers in July. DSS re-opened the application portal in June to take applications for the final distribution of the ARPA Stabilization grants. The first distribution of funds supported 3 months operating expenses up to a cap by provider type. Providers that received the first distribution of funds will receive about 2 months additional operating. New applicants that did not previously apply will receive 5 months so that both groups receive the same levels of funding.
  • New videos are available for those interested in learning more the requirements to be a state licensed child care program or state registered family day care. Click here to access the brief videos.

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