Maribel Loste, administrator for the Child Care and Development Fund Program, announced last week the availability of the final draft for Fiscal Year’s 2019-2021 CCDF State Plan for public viewing and comment.
Under the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs, the CCDF program provides resources to state, territory, and tribal grantees that enable low-income parents to work or pursue education and training so that they can better support their families while at the same time promoting the learning and development of their children.
Loste said the state plan includes ongoing family engagement, childcare financial assistance, ensuring equal access for low-income households, establishing a monitoring system for child care settings, the need to recruit and retain an effective childcare workforce, continuous quality improvement and overall program accountability.
Gov. Ralph DLG Torres stated that the CCDF program has grown over the years, and has helped numerous families seek employment or complete their education after securing childcare.
“For many families, trustworthy childcare makes all the difference when seeking to better their lives, which is why I highly commend the CCDF administrator and team for their work on updating their state plan. We have a stronger peace of mind since the initiation of these improvements and I urge our community to take an active role in supporting and advocating for better childcare,” Torres said.
Department of Community and Cultural Affairs Secretary Robert Hunter said the CCDF program provides funding to enhance the quality of childcare starting in November 2014.
“Back when the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 2014 was signed into law by U.S. Congress, the program has served to strengthen the health and safety of childcare. Our CCDF team has been very diligent in implementing such policies and I am very pleased by the progress of our childcare providers,” Hunter said.
Loste added that all stakeholders and those involved in the childcare profession can provide their input to better the program’s plans for the next three years.
“The state plan focuses on key functions for integrated care for low-income, working families and this plan can help parents make informed consumer choices and access information to support child development. We invite the community to take a look at the plan and the steps taken to improve the overall quality childcare in the Commonwealth,” she said.
Four public hearings will be held to provide an opportunity for the public to comment on the current provisions. The public is invited to comment orally or in writing at the following scheduled hearings:
-June 4, 2018: Kagman Community Center, 6pm
-June 5, 2018: Tinian Youth Center, 6pm
-June 7, 2018: Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Center, 6pm
-June 8, 2018: Sinapalo Youth Center, 6pm
Copies of the proposed plan are available online at cnmicclp.org. For more information, call (670) 664-2576/2589/2575. (PR)