Early Childhood Express April 2020

mother working on laptop while toddler child colors

“By Friday, I was exhausted by my new job and convinced that public school teachers should be paid a billion dollars a year.” Emily Raboteau on homeschooling during a pandemic. | New York Review of Books

Well, spring sprang several weeks ago and I’m wondering who was actually able to see it from their windows or while walking at a safe social distance from neighbors. I’ve had the technological wonder of ZOOM to help me out…singing Beatles songs from across the state, and watch parties on Facebook. People have definitely gotten creative in figuring out strategies to stay connected.

Speaking of ZOOM (not to mention, connection), Kerri from your ESD will be hosting at Pre-K teachers ZOOM meeting…Connect and Collaborate with Coffee… on Tuesdays from 9-10 a.m. Sounds fun. I might even show up for that!

Here’s a short but interesting article on temperament.  Written for parents, I think it’s also good information to remind us about the differences in the children we work with. Understanding a child’s temperament can help you choose strategies that nurture a child’s development. Visit this website to learn more about what temperament is and how to support young children of different temperaments.

If you haven’t yet signed up for The Center for the Developing Child’s Brain Architect’s podcasts I urge you to get right on it.  The March podcast is focused on serve and return strategies.  We often think of these strategies as between parents and babies but they are useful from babies through adults.  You can sign up (it’s free) and listen to previous episodes.

Many of you may be serving immigrant/undocumented families.  These families may be reluctant to seek needed health care when, at this time of COVID-19, it may be critically necessary.  The US Citizens and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced that it will not consider testing, treatment, or preventive care related to COVID-19 in their public charge assessment.  They are saying that immigrant families should seek care, should see their doctors or health clinics, visit hospitals, urgent cares, or emergency services.  Emergency Medicaid coverage has been expanded in Washington State to cover diagnosis and treatment of COVID-19 and the Health Benefit Exchange has opened a special enrollment period.

Your OSPI Special Education Department has published (and will continue to update) guidance for providing services to students who are receiving special education services and what our responsibilities are during the current school closures. Though I’m certain your districts have filled you in on the necessity of continuing IEP and IFSP services, the detail in this guidance may be instructive as you plan your service delivery. The page also includes a link to the Early Support for Infants and Toddlers guidance if you are serving children who have IFSPs.

Your Capital Region ESD 113 also has information, resources, and updates on COVID-19.

This article was contributed by Mary Perkins for the Early Childhood Express newsletter.