Welcome to the Mid-State Regional Key STARS Newsletter!!
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Learn more about Keystone STARS and share ideas/network with other ECE professionals.

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CLASS Threshold Scores Announced

If you are at or working on STAR 3 or 4, and choose to be assessed with the CLASS Assessment tool, please review the attached chart for scoring thresholds, broken down by age group and STAR level.
REMINDER - Grant Expense Reports Due

** Rising STARS Expense Reports are now PAST DUE **

PLEASE READ the directions attached and make sure we have your grant closure   by the date listed on your grant agreement packet  .

If you do not think you have the  Final Approved grant documents, please reach out to your Quality Coach, and they will send them to you. These are the documents you  must  use for your grant closure.

Unspent funds must be returned as soon as possible. 

Providers on our Fiscal Monitoring list will be receiving notification soon, and monitoring visits will take place during the months of April and early May.  

Please  contact your Quality Coach  with any questions.

Transcript Request

If you receive an email from the PD Registry asking you to mail copies of diplomas or transcripts to the PA Key for approval, please ignore it. This is a process being used in another state and mistakenly added to our system.
You DO NOT need to send anything related to your education to the PA Key.
Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE's)

Oprah Winfrey has now put ACES (Adverse Childhood Experiences) on the map with her report on her own early life that was recently aired on 60 Minutes. Use this momentum to learn more about ACES and the effect of trauma on our youngest children. START with checking out this article and passing it along to all of the teachers in your center. WATCH for Professional Development Opportunities that will be coming on Trauma Informed Care in the upcoming area and COMMIT to attending one of the sessions. 
Spring Into Action (part 1)

Though you wouldn’t know it by looking out the window, spring is here. With warmer weather, children will finally get to spend more time outside. Now would be a great time to prepare for spending lots of time outdoors with your school age afterschool and summer program. But you don’t have to do it alone. With a little planning, children can share in the preparation for days in the great outdoors.

Start by surveying your outdoor spaces
If you have mulched areas, check mulch depth, as mulch usually compresses during winter. Borrow rakes and have the school-agers help break up and spread the mulch. Families may be willing to donate mulch to supplement areas that need. Check grassy areas for bald spots; again children can help fill in patches with grass seed, and even plant flowers. Ditto for helping spruce up weather worn outdoor furniture with a coat of paint or a child inspired design.

Next survey your equipment.
Have the children help take an inventory of your outdoor equipment. Together decide which items are work keeping, and what items are ready for the trash or recycle bin. Speaking of recycling, here is a great video of making surprisingly sturdy jump ropes with grocery bags and duct tape. Make sure that there is a variety of different items to use, and enough equipment for the number of children in your program. Consider the amount and type of use equipment will receive; here is where spending a bit more will result in higher quality and more durable equipment. Some inexpensive items to add or replace are bubbles, sidewalk chalks, Chinese ropes (made from extra thick rubber bands) and Frisbees.

In part two, more ways to take advantage of the warm temperatures will be explored by taking the inside out. 
Food For Thought

Take a trip to Tasty Acres Farm with the Grow It, Try It, Like It! Nutrition education kit. Introduce children to three fruits and three vegetables... Order your free education kit on SharedSourcePA.

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Suspension & Expulsion Resources

Here’s the March issue of The Right Stuff: Resources to Help Realize the Promise of Each Vermont Child . This issue has free, readily available resources for understanding issues related to the suspension and expulsion of young children, as well as tools and strategies for preventing these phenomena.
If you do nothing else, please take a few minutes to watch Rosemarie Allen talk about suspension from a personal point of view. Her TED Talk video is called School Suspensions Are an Adult Behavio r.
March Buzz! 🐝 What's new this month?

COMPLETED distance education lessons MUST BE POSTMARKED no later than June 30, 2018, in order to receive a certificate of completion from Better Kid Care. Any lessons received that are not postmarked by June 30, 2018, will not be processed....

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Join us for a STARS Networking Meeting!     

Certification and Program Quality Assessor Panel
April 12th at 1 at  Lancaster Farm and Home Center
Other Community Meetings & Events

Thursday, April 5, 2018 This seminar is designed for preschool educators, kindergarten teachers and agency employees working with children. The agenda includes professional development and networking opportunities. 6 professional development...

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Professional Development Updates 
Register on the  PD Registry

Hiring and Retaining Qualified Staff

Webinar - March 27th

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Facing the Challenge: Supporting Young Children Who Use...

Charged with the challenging task of working with children who use challenging behaviors? This webinar on April 3rd will begin the discussion of understanding, preventing and planning responses to...

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You are invited to join a webinar: Connect with Coaching

This webinar on April 5th will introduce participants to coaching guides that BKC developed to support implementation of best practices in child care following online learning experiences. The coaching guides have coaching tools, videos,...

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Thank you for all you do for children, families, and your community by being part of the STARS program!
Mid-State Regional Key/Child Care Consultants
(717) 854-2273 or (800) 864-4925