Early Childhood Alliance

Early childhood education support in the Wasatch Back gives children opportunities in their earliest years to thrive, learn, and grow.

Early Childhood Alliance

About the Early Childhood Alliance

The Early Childhood Alliance engages, educates, and supports members, children, parents, and the community at large to prioritize accessible, excellent, and equitable outcomes for children in the Wasatch Back from the prenatal stage through age three.

The years from birth to age three are critical to a child’s development and lifelong success. When a child is not given the opportunity to develop to their full potential in these early years, the harm and consequent costs are borne over many years by the individual, the family, and the whole community. Many Park City 5-year-olds – particularly our low-income, minority, and English-language learners – are not considered ready when they start kindergarten.

Learn more about the need for investing in early childhood development in Summit County in the Early Childhood 2021 Needs Assessment.

National Child Care and Development Needs

Nationally, the cost of early childhood care and education is growing much faster than income, with the cost of childcare in many cases rivaling that of a college education. Low-income families who pay for care spend more than 25% of their income on childcare, while middle- to upper-income families pay 6% to 8% of their income for childcare, reflecting the serious inequities that currently exist. And even while early childcare is unaffordable for many, rates of pay in the sector are considered low, creating challenges in recruiting and retaining qualified early childhood staff.

During the first few years of life, over 1 million new neural connections are formed per second.

Investments that support early childhood development can have a 13% rate of return to the community – one of many reasons why early childhood development is so important.

 

Early Childhood Development and Education Goals

  1. The Early Childhood Alliance wants to ensure that every child is kindergarten-ready by kindergarten age. Exceptions will be made for other-abled children and our goal is to ensure families have access to resources so that all children reach their full potential.
  2. All organizations, services, and systems that ensure early childhood development are sustainably financed and operating at the highest possible standards and impact.
  3. Children and families that are at a higher risk for needing support are identified and interventions are prioritized accordingly.

Early Childhood Alliance Action Plans

The Early Childhood Alliance is a voluntary association of interested organizations and individuals who work collaboratively to increase access to affordable, high-quality childcare and education options, support and educate parents and caregivers, strengthen and streamline connections among all early childhood providers, and make early childhood development, wellbeing, and education a community priority worthy of investment.

Services

  • Improve and expand center-based early childhood care and education.
  • Increase parent/caregiver support.
  • Strengthen connections among providers.

Advocacy and Community Education

  • Make early childhood care and education a community priority through a public outreach and communication campaign.
  • Advocate for public policies that increase funding, support parents/caregivers, and improve services.

Data and Tracking

  • Track early childhood development results over time using KEEP kindergarten-readiness data.

Early Childhood Alliance Strategic Priorities

  • Expand and strengthen access to affordable, high-quality childcare and education.
  • Build parents’ capacity as their child’s first and best caregivers and teachers through home visiting, referrals, services, and information.
  • Strengthen connections among all early childhood providers.
  • Make early-childhood care and education a community priority and increase government, philanthropic, and business investment in early-childhood programs.

Provide Early Childhood Education Support and Help Our Local Children Thrive

To support this initiative, please donate online or contact Sam Mueller at sam@parkcitycf.org or 435-214-7477. To get more involved with the Early Childhood Alliance, please visit their website.

Photo credits: PC Tots

Highlights