Want to Help Young Children? Expand Medicaid.

A new blog from the Center for Children & Families of the Georgetown University Health Policy Institute presents the Early Childhood Workforce Index 2018, a report assessing states on early childhood employment conditions and policies. The Index provides a current appraisal of workforce conditions and policies across states. It is divided into four topical chapters:

  1.  About the Workforce provides a national snapshot of characteristics of the early educator workforce across settings and discusses state-level variation.
  2. Earnings and Economic Security provides national and state data on ECE workforce pay in relation to other occupations and presents new analyses of pay.
  3. Early Childhood Workforce Policies assesses state policies in five areas: qualifications and educational supports; work environments; compensation and financial relief strategies; workforce data; and financial resources.
  4. Family and Income Support Policies assesses state policies across occupations in two areas: income supports and health and well-being.


Referral and Care Coordination Resources

This month on the Healthy Child Development State Resource Center, NASHP features its updated referral and care coordination map. Thirty-three states have standardized referral processes to connect children with critical early intervention services, compared to 14 in 2016. Access examples of referral forms that are compliant with federal health (HIPAA) and education (FERPA) privacy and confidentiality requirements; feedback forms to inform primary care providers of the results of evaluations; and referral guidelines. 

Parenting Knowledge Among First-Time Parents of Young Children

A new report from Child Trends finds that first-time parents of infants and toddlers across all racial, ethnic, and economic backgrounds have difficulty obtaining clear and trustworthy information about parenting.

How State Medicaid and Title V Partnerships Improve Care for Children with Special Health Care Needs in Medicaid Managed Care

States are increasingly utilizing Medicaid managed care (MMC) to serve children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN), who can require a complex array of services. Many states find that forging partnerships between their MMC systems and Title V CYSHCN programs improves care coordination, transitions from pediatric to adult care systems, quality of care measurements, and other services provided to CYSHCN. A new article from NASHP outlines how they’re making it happen.

Can We Create a Fair Shot at Health?

A new post from the Robert Wood Johnson’s Culture of Health blog highlights a new feature of the 2018 County Health Rankings, health gaps that persist by race. The post also showcases Culture of Health Prize winners Louisville, Kentucky and Menominee Nation in Wisconsin which have implemented effective approaches toward improving community health through addressing the impact of historical trauma.

Child Care Assistance Spending and Participation in 2016

This fact sheet from CLASP shows that states’ child care assistance spending declined from 2015 to 2016. As a result of decreased spending, fewer children than ever are receiving CCDBG-funded child care.

Tips for Funders on Supporting Two-Generation Approaches That Lift Families From Poverty

Five years ago, the Casey Foundation launched a two-generation initiative, Family Economic Success – Early Childhood Education, aimed at breaking the cycle of poverty. A new report, Investing in Innovation, revisits this initiative and shares advice for funders who may be interested in supporting efforts to help children and their parents succeed at the same time. Among the report’s recommendations:

  • Ensure that indicators and performance measures are clear;
  • Build a capacity to collect and use integrated family data; and
  • Invest in longer timelines.

Learn more smart moves for supporting two-generation work

Together for Families National Conference 

The HMG National Center is a National Partner for the Together for Families National

Conference in Cleveland, OH on Oct 15-27, 2018. This conference will weave together content related to the field of Family Support, Strengthening Families, and the Standards of Quality for Family Strengthening & Support. It is a unique new opportunity to build connections with various stakeholders from across the country in the Family Support and Strengthening Field and share best and promising practice. 

For more news and resources on capacity building, funding opportunities, training, events, webinars and more, log on to the HMG National Center’s FUNDING & CAPACITY BUILDING OPPORTUNITIES web page.


Your Invitation to the Early Childhood Innovation Network

Gary Community Investments and OpenIDEO are thrilled to be building on the momentum created through the Early Childhood Innovation Prize by launching a bold new initiative: the Early Childhood Innovation Network. The Network will connect select new and experienced early childhood leaders in a multi-disciplinary environment to accelerate breakthrough solutions for young children. The process has already begun to onboard innovators from the Prize, and, in fact, dozens of innovators have indicated their interest in helping to lead the Network. Conveners are now inviting Advisors: early childhood leaders, experts and funders to join the Network. As a leader and valuable contributor in the field, the HMG National Center is encouraging HMG Affiliate Leads to join the Early Childhood Innovation Network as an Advisor. Those who are interested may review roles and complete a 5-minute survey

Presentation at QRIS National Meeting

Jacquelyn Rose of the Advancing Kids Innovation Program (AKIP), attended the 2018 Quality Rating Improvement System (QRIS) National Meeting and presented in a breakout session on behalf of the Help Me Grow (HMG) National Center. The presentation highlighted the HMG model, HMG Vermont and Orange County, CA strategies for integrating the HMG with the early learning sector, and our upcoming Community of Practice. Co-presenters were Debi Mathias of  the BUILD Initiative, Lauren Smith of the Vermont Department of Health), Rebecca Hernandez of HMG Orange County, CA, and Krista Murphy of the Orange County Department of Education. 

Are We Asking the Wrong Questions About Investing in Child Health?

A new blog post by Scott Orsey, associate director of operations, business strategy and institutional engagement for Connecticut Children’s Medical Center’s Office for Community Child Health, takes a futuristic look at the transportation sector to ask if we are missing the mark when it comes to how we best invest in children’s health. The Help Me Grow National Center is part of the Office for Community Child Health. 

Breastfeeding is Best!

The United States delegation to the United Nations World Health Assembly recently shocked the public health sector by seeking to weaken a resolution that called for governments to “protect, promote and support breastfeeding” and to restrict misleading advertising of food products that are harmful for children. A new blog post from Connecticut Children’s Medical Center’s Office for Community Child Health calls for providers and the public health community to prioritize children’s health above industry profits and political gain.


Newly Published Research Evaluates the Relationship Between Help Me Grow and the Protective Factors

Evaluators working with Help Me Grow Utah (HMGU) used the FRIENDS Protective Factors survey to compare changes in parent-reported protective factors among a group of HMGU families and a control group. HMGU families exhibited increases in protective factor scores, including in the domain of knowledge of parenting and child development. While control group scores also showed an increase over the two time points, such increases were smaller. The results suggest the role of interaction with HMGU in impacting the protective factors and confirms previous research similarly evaluating associations between HMG and protective factors. 
Hill KD, Hill BJ. Help Me Grow Utah and the impact on family protective factors development. Journal of Children’s Services. 2018;13(1):33-43.


Early Identification and Intervention Systems in California

Throughout the country, there is growing recognition of the importance of healthy child development in fostering school readiness and, by extension, social and economic success as adults. At the front end of the early identification and intervention systems – the topic of a report from Harder+Company Community Research and HMG California  – is the need for a system to monitor young children so as to raise flags when developmental concerns are observed. With the support and coordination of a robust system, families successfully guide their young children to whatever supports and services are most appropriate within the constellation of early intervention care providers. Without a robust system, it is far too easy for families—particularly those facing language and cultural barriers—to fall through the cracks. Learn about how three First 5 Commissions approach strengthening early identification and intervention systems within each county’s local context, opportunities, and constraints.

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