FCC Emergency Broadband Benefit Program
The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has launched the availability of the FCC Emergency Broadband Benefit (EBB) Program, which provides a temporary discount on monthly broadband bills for qualifying low-income consumers. Eligible households can enroll through an approved broadband service provider or by visiting the GetEmergencyBroadband.org site. Eligible households can receive:
- Up to a $50-per-month discount on your broadband service and associated equipment rentals
- A one-time discount of up to $100 for a laptop, tablet, or desktop computer (with a co-payment of more than $10 but less than $50)
Only one monthly service discount and one device discount are allowed per household. Program rules acknowledge that there may be more than one eligible household member residing at the same address.
Help in applying for the program is available from the Emergency Broadband Support Center by emailing EBBHelp@usac.org or calling (833) 511-0311.
The EBB Program will end when funds are exhausted or six months after the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services declares an end to the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) health emergency, whichever is sooner.
From IDHS: Grant Accountability and Transparency Act Technical Assistance
The Illinois Grant Accountability and Transparency Act (GATA) was created to provide consistent processes for State grants that comply with federal reporting and auditing standards.
To support more grassroots organizations that serve hard-to-reach communities, the Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) GATA Technical Assistance Learning Management System (LMS) was developed to provide guidance on the grant application process.
Go directly to the GATA Training Course Learning Management System sign-in page. For questions and assistance with the system, send a brief message to DHS.GATATraining@illinois.gov. You can also learn more about GATA on the IDHS website.
IDHS will be hosting five one-hour sessions to provide a high-level overview of GATA. Registration is required, and space is limited.
The sessions will be identical, so please register for only one of the following dates:
New Initiative Supporting ECE Leaders: Quality Facilities for All!
IFF is excited and honored to offer early childhood education leaders in high-need communities across Illinois an opportunity to receive up to $50,000 in facilities-focused grants, leadership and professional development opportunities, and technical assistance through the Quality Facilities for All (QFA) Initiative.
QFA is committed to expanding and improving access to infant and toddler care across Illinois by addressing facility quality concerns related to indoor air quality, temperature, ventilation, noise, lighting, classroom furnishing, and outdoor play areas. These factors contribute to high-quality learning environments, which are proven to positively impact the learning, development, and well-being of infants and toddlers. QFA is a statewide program that will focus on high-need communities identified by IFF research, with a current focus on Englewood, Roseland, and South Lawndale. View two Quality Facilities for All pilot projects in Chicago by clicking here.
Applications for Quality Facilities for All will be available June 1st.
For additional information and eligibility criteria, please visit IFF's website.
Erikson Institute Offers Scholarships for Their Online I/ECMH Certificate Program
Erikson Institute’s Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Certificate Program is a post-graduate academic program designed to support experienced professionals working with infants, young children, and families. Students learn to support the mental, emotional, and social needs of infants, young children, and their families. Students in the Infant Mental Health Program come from a variety of backgrounds including social work, psychology, child development, early childhood education, early intervention, and other fields working with infants and young children.
The program is fully online with a combination of synchronous and asynchronous classes for a total of 18-credit hours completed over two academic years. Ideal candidates for this program are experienced professionals who are interested in enhancing their professional capacities with an infant and early childhood mental health lens. A bachelor’s degree with 3-5 years of experience is required for admission.
Applications are currently being accepted by the Erikson Institute for the 2021-2022 school year. All applicants will be considered for scholarship funding. For more information and to complete the on-line application, please visit Erikson’s website.
You may also contact Sarah Martinez, Co-Director of the Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Certificate Program at Erikson, for further information at: 312-893-7235 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Small Business Owners and Federal Relief Resources
Early childhood programs are also small businesses and should be maximizing the federal relief funds passed by Congress in December 2020. Click here for a list of resources to better understand what is available to help your business weather the financial storm created by the pandemic.
IDHS Grant Technical Assistance Tools
The Illinois Department of Human Services (IDHS) has launched a new tool to help organizations across Illinois successfully comply with the Grant Accountability and Transparency Act (GATA).
The IDHS Grant Accountability and Transparency Act (GATA) Technical Assistance (TA) Learning Management System (LMS) was developed to provide technical assistance and navigation of the Grant Accountability and Transparency Act and the grant application process.
The system is available for self-paced, online learning, with an instructor in a physical classroom or in a virtual classroom online. It includes six modules and the estimated time to complete all modules is approximately 24 hours.
The weblink for self-paced, online learning is available at no cost on the IDHS website under the "Providers" tab, in the "Provider Information" section.
Coronavirus Resources for Child Care Providers
During this time as the nation continues to face challenges related to COVID-19, the Committee for Economic Development (CED) has compiled a clearinghouse of resources in an effort to help child care providers (child care homes and centers) access federal sources for support. Resources will be added to the Coronavirus Resources for Child Care Providers webpage as they become available.
The following documents may be of particular interest given the recently passed FY2021 Consolidated Appropriations & COVID Relief Act (P.L. 116-260):
Early Childhood Funding Commission Town Hall Meetings
Governor Pritzker’s Early Childhood Funding Commission—an appointed group of child care and early education leaders charged with making recommendations that will result in big, meaningful changes that will give parents better child care and early education options hosted two town hall meetings.
The Commission hosted a series of community Town Hall meetings on their draft recommendations. Click on the links below to view the recordings of the Town Hall meetings.
During the town hall meetings, participants had the opportunity to connect directly with members of the Commission to ask questions about their emerging recommendations, that are to:
- Make it easier to manage and communicate about the quality and availability of child care options by pulling all the programs into one new structure;
- Make it easier to get public funding for child care to local child care providers; and
- Urge the state to invest billions more in early childhood so that more providers can provide excellent care to all families who want it, in all parts of the State.
IL GOECD Supporting Gateways to Opportunity Credential Fee Waivers
Since June of 2020, over 3,000 individuals have taken advantage of this credential fee waiver opportunity, and you can, too! Please share this information with your colleagues, child care programs, family child care providers, and family workers, as there is still time to apply! Next steps: Apply directly online in your Registry (or email your application if you prefer) and send official transcripts to INCCRRA if they are not already on file.
That's it! Two simple steps to apply for your Gateways to Opportunity ECE, Infant Toddler, Illinois Director, Family Specialist, Technical Assistance, or Family Child Care Credential. Apply today!
Opportunity for Home Visiting Collaboratives to Implement IRIS
As a part of the Preschool Development Grant Birth Through Five (PDG B-5) Renewal
grant, the Governor’s Office of Early Childhood Development (GOECD) seeks to
implement the Integrated Referral and Intake System (IRIS)
in up to five established
home visiting collaboratives, including those in rural communities that are practicing
some form of coordinated intake processes and are in need of adequate support and
technology to fully develop into coordinated intake communities.
While direct funding is not provided through this pilot, each pilot collaborative will receive access to IRIS and technical assistance support. Click here
for more information on the pilot project and here
for the application template. Please send any questions or concerns to Deborah Hwang at Deborah.Hwang@Illinois.gov.
Neighborhood Opportunity Fund
The City of Chicago's Neighborhood Opportunity Fund will open for grant applications from entrepreneurs and nonprofit groups on the South, West and Southwest sides September 14, 2020 with more than $5 million in funding available. A map of eligible areas can be found on the program's website here.
IRS Home Office Deduction
As many small business have transitioned to working from home, they might be eligible to claim some of their expenses, including rent, mortgage payments, insurance, utilities and more. To see if you qualify, visit IRS.gov for more information.
Call for Applications: Lena Start Launch Funds
LENA is a national nonprofit on a mission to help communities accelerate language development in children birth to age three in order to improve their cognitive, social, and emotional health and to close opportunity gaps. Due to COVID-19, communities across the country are looking for new ways to ensure every child has enriching early language experiences. LENA’s launch grants for LENA Start provide funding for family engagement and early language development. These grants can help school districts, libraries, Head Starts, and early childhood education centers offer their families an evidence-based group model program that is helping to create stronger families and increase school readiness.
Click here for more information and to apply for funding.
For Child Care Providers
FY21 CPR/FA Reimbursement Application - July 1, 2020 - June 1, 2021. Funds are available for providers to take CPR/FA and submit for reimbursement.
FY21 CPR/FA Reimbursement Application English Application | Spanish Application
ISBE Frequently Asked Questions for Early Childhood Block Grant Program Grantees