February 10, 2021
Beginning with the 2021-2022 Contract Year, Providers will need to document compliance with E-Verify prior to executing the SR and/or VPK Contract with ELCNWF. Please see below for information regarding setting up an E-verify account, and the Affidavit that must be completed and uploaded into the PROFILE-Document E-Verify Folder.

As a reminder, ALL Providers are required to annually submit:

  • W-9  Completed – signed and dated AFTER January 1, 2021
  • Current screenshot of the SUNBIZ website showing ACTIVE and having borders which show the website address and date the information was pulled down from the system (On or After January 1, 2021)

These documents should be uploaded in the PROFILE-Documents tab to the corresponding folders.

Please take a moment to review the information below. If you have questions or concerns, please email redline@elcnwf.org
VPK Registration Now Open for 2021-22 School Year

Please remind parents of 4-year-olds that the VPK registration is now open for the 2021-22 School year.

What they will need to apply:
  • A valid email account
  • Proof of child’s age
  • Proof of residency

Steps to apply:
  • Visit the OEL Family Portal
  • Establish a user account
  • Complete the application
  • Submit the application

If their child qualifies, they will receive a Certificate of Eligibility from ELCNWF that they will take to the VPK provider/program they wish for their child to attend.
You can direct parents to the VPK page at elcnwf.org for more information using the button below.
The 26th Annual Florida’s Children’s Week is scheduled for April 4-9, 2021. This event is a special annual celebration filled with joyful singing voices of young children, the colorful “Hanging of Hands”, and the dedication of thousands of child advocates across Florida.
You can begin creating your hand artwork as soon as you would like. This year, we are asking that each program string together their hand art into 8- to 10-foot strands, and attach a name card including the program name, program city, class name, and class age group. We want our legislators to spot hand art from their hometown. 

  • Hand artwork must be strung together and secured prior to mailing. Please do not send individual hands.
  • Alternatively, you may also use the hands to create small posters that should be no larger than 11x14.
We ask that ALL strands of hand art be completed by March 5th. Due to necessary COVID precautions, we are asking all providers to mail their hand artwork directly to the ELC of Big Bend no later than March 5th to allow for the USPS shipping times. Please mail to:

The Early Learning Coalition of the Big Bend Region
2639 N. Monroe Street, Building C
Tallahassee, FL 32303

Click the button below for a flyer that you can post in your center. If you have any questions or need additional information about Children's Week, please email redline@elcnwf.org
Random Acts of Kindness Day is February 17, 2021
Random Acts of Kindness Week is February 14-20, 2021

We know everyone can use more kindness in their lives! Scientific evidence shows us the positive effects of doing kind acts for others as well as receiving or even witnessing kindness. Even the smallest act of kindness can change a life. We encourage our providers to Explore the Good and Make Kindness the Norm. Click below for a poster you can print for your center.
NAEYC Celebrates Educators

During this crisis, you’ve been there for each other, providing support to children, giving encouragement, and sharing resources with families.
Every day individual educators give it their all to make a monumental difference in the lives of the young children, families, and the communities you serve.
Visit the Celebrating Educators webpage to recognize a peer or colleague with a personalized NAEYC “Thank You!” Let them know how appreciative you are of what they do each day. 
PBS Learning Media

Get to know the history and significance behind these U.S. holidays with this new video collection of resources from PBS Learning Media.
Sign up for ASQ-SE On-Site Technical Assistance and Receive a FREE Social-Emotional Kit!
The Coalition is excited to bring this opportunity to our SR Providers. This on-site tool will assist our Providers in evaluating potential social-emotional concerns for children in their care. Please use this link to sign up for this on-site technical assistance. The deadline to sign up and receive your free Social-Emotional Kit is today, February 10, 2021.
We are looking for parents to join the Parent Advisory Committee (PAC)

Download a copy of the flyer by clicking the button below. Please make sure all parents in your center receive a copy of this flyer. You can print to send home with each of your children, or you can simply post the flyer on your social media page.
Florida Prepaid College Savings Plans for Families

Let your parents know about the Florida Prepaid College Savings Plans. Open Enrollment is happening now.

Florida Prepaid Plans start at just $45/month AND scholarships are available!

Direct parents to the site below and have them enroll using promo code ELC2021 to save $50.
Early Care and Education Webinar Series from Save the Children

Save the Children designed a series of trainings focusing on professional development that supports and influences early care and education professionals. 

These courses are FREE and are conducted live via Zoom. If you are interested in registering, please email atrent@savechildren.org.
As OEL is reviewing VPK success rates between VPK vs. Non-VPK programs across the state, the Coalition wanted to remind you about the OEL sponsored Virtual Study Buddies (VSB) opportunities, to assist VPK teachers as they review for the end of course assessments that are required for some of the VPK trainings. These sessions are FREE and provide an opportunity for participants to ask clarifying questions and get a better understanding of the course content that they will be testing on.  
Upcoming Literacy Webinar Series from the Florida Grade-Level Reading Campaign

February 19th -10:30am ET/9:30am CT

What is Phonological Awareness Anyway? Fun Games to Improve Students’ Early Reading Development

Training Stipends for Teachers through PAEC and OEL

Florida Early Childhood Educators are eligible for a $75 stipend upon the successful completion of the specific courses by June 30, 2021. The following funding is sponsored through OEL and Panhandle Area Educational Consortium (PAEC).
Click below to find eligible courses and additional information.
Click below to access the Teacher Stipends for Teachers FAQs.
HiMama Social Skills in Play and Learning Webinar 

February 11th - 2:00pm ET/1:00pm CT

Tune in to this community webinar to learn more about:  
  • What is social competence and why it matters
  • How important observations are
  • Children who are socially successful
  • Why self-regulation matters 
Florida KidCare

In a time when the health and safety of our community are most important, help keep the children in your center insured.
Encourage families in your centers to contact ELCNWF for information and assistance applying for Florida KidCare.
Call 850-747-5400 X 108 or request CCR&R via the link below!
February Special Dates
Cartoon Corner
Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood: It's Love Day! 
Black History Month
National Library Lover’s Month

February 14
Valentine's Day

February 15
Presidents' Day

February 17
National Random Acts of Kindness Day

February 26
National Tell a Fairy Tale Day

February 27
National Strawberry Day
We exist to grow healthy children, parents, and the relationship between them.
Sponsored by the Early Learning Coalition of Northwest Florida and the State of Florida, Office of Early Learning