These two CDRC research projects are funded through the South Carolina Department of Social Services. These grants are federal flow-through dollars that originate with the Federal Child Care Development Fund (FCDF).
The first initiative, the South Carolina Child Care Resource and Referral Network, contributes to school readiness and supports for children and families and operates through $1.2 million in annual grant funding. It provides a network of 13 quality coaches who work with child care providers throughout the state and provide training, on-site coaching and mentoring. This helps them provide better services to children and families.
The SC-CCRRN also educates parents and other community members about quality child care — what to look for in a good provider, how to find a good provider, and why it matters. Staff are engaged with child care providers throughout the state, including center-based providers, as well as family-based providers. They are connected with several different state organizations and advisory boards exploring various kinds of supports to improve the infrastructure and quality of services that are broadly available to all children in South Carolina.
Part of the funding supports child care research. Staff are actively working with the South Carolina Department of Social Services and federal partners to explore state administrative data on child care services to document the effectiveness of services that are provided to children and families in our state, and to identify and contribute new knowledge and information to the field regarding appropriate supports for young children.
The second initiative is the South Carolina Child Care Inclusion Collaborative, which is funded through $500,000 annually in grant monies. Through this program, training technical assistance specialists work with child care providers to help them gain confidence and competence in meeting the needs of children with developmental delays or disabilities. Specialists visit child care centers and provide specialized training to teachers, work side-by-side with them in the classroom to model best practices, and provide feedback based on observation. In addition to helping teachers strengthen skills, it assists them in and individualizing curriculum for students.