Giving Compass' Take:

• Stay-at-home orders have put a strain on early childhood education programs that are unable to move to online platforms or provide distance learning.  

• How can donors support the shift for early childhood education programs to access online teaching capacities?

• Read about the importance of early childhood education. 

Early last month, Rhian Allvin, executive director of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, published a blog post with the title, “Making Connections: There’s No Such Thing as Online Preschool.”

The premise of the article was that an online early education curriculum is in no way “comparable to a high-quality, full-day, full-year early-childhood education program.”

Unfortunately, stay-at-home orders have put a halt to many young children’s first year in the classroom, and online platforms are the primary way they are interacting with their teachers and classmates.

But Williams is among the early educators fortunate enough to be working. The majority of those in the early education field work in community- and home-based programs. And Allvin estimates roughly 70% of child care centers across the country shut down in the span of a week.

A tracker from the Hunt Institute shows 17 states have closed child care facilities, while the rest are allowing programs to operate under certain restrictions.

In addition, while stimulus funds for child care — $3.5 billion — will help cover the cost of care for children of essential workers, it provides “minimal resources to providers or their staff,” said Lea Austin, executive director of the Center for the Study of Child Care Employment at the University of California, Berkeley. The center is conducting a survey to better understand the extent of layoffs and closures in California.

The center’s leaders argue those early educators continuing to work should be earning "hazard pay." And advocates are calling for future stimulus packages to include much more for the child care industry.

Read the full article about early education programs seek stability by Linda Jacobson at Education Dive.