Key Variables to Consider for Getting a T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Program Started in Your State
Getting a T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Program started takes careful planning and consideration by a state’s early childhood community. Several things must take place for T.E.A.C.H. to be a viable education and compensation strategy for a state.
For states that are exploring the possibility or are in the early stages of developing T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Programs, the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center (the Center) provides technical assistance and support to states in the following areas to assist in the planning process.
Hosting an initial meeting
Often states do not have the financial resources to support early development meetings. Staff of the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center provide on-site presentations, technical assistance and materials for states interested in developing a T.E.A.C.H. Program. One on-site presentation to a team of statewide stakeholders may be available at no cost, if certain criteria are met.
Designating an administrative home
Every T.E.A.C.H. or WAGE$ Program must have an administrative “home.” The stakeholder group must come together in support of one not-for-profit organization as the administrative home in the state. If more than one organization is interested in becoming the administrative home, the Center conducts a Request for Proposal process. Center staff help states weigh their options. Once an organization is selected, it must agree to the T.E.A.C.H. core values, license components and scholarship framework.
Becoming a licensed provider
The T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Program name is a registered trademark of Child Care Services Association. States interested in participating in T.E.A.C.H. must be licensed by the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center. The goal of licensing is to protect the integrity of the program. Once an initial License Agreement has been signed, the license is in effect for two to three years. The license allows the state to use the T.E.A.C.H. name, logo, materials and database and requires the state to abide by standards outlined in the license. License renewal is based on the state maintaining fidelity to the T.E.A.C.H. model and compliance with the license agreement.
Finding and securing funding
Securing funding for T.E.A.C.H. is key to a state’s participation in the program and must take place prior to the issuance of a license. This step can take anywhere from a few months to several years. Many states currently participating in T.E.A.C.H. started with a small amount of funding from a private foundation or business partner interested in addressing compensation and retention issues in early childhood programs. As results are experienced and momentum builds in a state, additional dollars may be secured through the public sector. Center staff provide strategies and compelling research-based findings to support the search for funding.
Developing scholarship models
Prior to acquiring a T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Program license, a state must determine the initial scholarship model(s) that will be offered. Designing scholarship models is based on several factors including state policies and licensing regulations regarding education requirements for the early childhood workforce, the accessibility of a well-defined and articulated career path, and the availability of funding. Center staff provide technical assistance on what to consider when developing initial scholarship models and help new programs create their first program budget based on the models and available funds.
Support from the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® National Center for Launching and Maintaining a T.E.A.C.H. Program
Center staff work closely with all T.E.A.C.H. programs, providing training, technical assistance and support throughout the life of a T.E.A.C.H. license.
Center staff work closely with all T.E.A.C.H. programs to help:
- Identify possible sources of funding to support the implementation and growth of T.E.A.C.H. in their state
- Develop operational policies and procedures that are consistent with the requirements of the program license agreement
- Develop scholarship models that address the needs of their state’s early childhood workforce
- Recruit participants and expand their participant base
- Collect, analyze and report results by furnishing administrators with a database designed specifically for the T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® Program
Center staff also provide:
- Start-up and ongoing programmatic and database technical assistance and support
- Assistance with developing statistical reports on states’ program outcomes
- Resources and materials related to program operations and emerging issues in the field
- An annual T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood® and Child Care WAGE$® Professional Development Symposium