Giving Compass' Take:

• The Family Conservancy created the Early Education Taskforce during COVID-19 to forge partnerships and create a network that shares best practices and helps child care providers during this time. 

• How are childcare providers part of the COVID-19 recovery process? How can donors better support them? 

• Learn more about how to support center-based childcare during COVID-19. 

The Family Conservancy’s (TFC) work to improve the early education system has enabled them to forge close partnerships with thousands of child care providers and programs in the Kansas City Community. Over the years, these partnerships have deepened TFC’s understanding of challenges and opportunities facing the sector.

When COVID-19 disrupted everyday life in the Kansas City community, TFC already knew child care providers would play a key role in the response and recovery. Given many of the flaws that already existed in our child care sector, TFC also feared the pandemic would have devastating consequences for early education programs.

Anticipating the challenges that lay ahead, TFC formed the Early Education COVID-19 Task Force. Beginning in late March, this group of Kansas City Metro community stakeholders started monitoring supply and demand in the child care sector. Thanks to their longstanding relationships with child care providers, they quickly convened providers to promote best practices and share information. In partnership with local health departments, a series of webinars were offered to help providers understand new child care regulations and recommendations.

As the pandemic intensified and parents pulled their children out of care at an alarming and unpredictable rate, child care programs suffered significant financial losses. Through these challenges, they continued to be an essential part of the COVID-19 response by enabling medical professionals and other frontline workers to continue their important work. The majority of child care providers remained open, even though reduced attendance and added safety precautions put most programs on a path toward financial ruin.

Read the full article about supporting early education by Scott Hanson at Charity Navigator.