New Program Strengthens Professional Development for Early Educators in the NRV.
ABCs is making great strides in bringing an early educator income supplement program to full-time licensed childcare centers' teachers in Giles and Pulaski Counties.
"GIFT" is the new two-year pilot program, Giles Incentives for Teachers" will begin paying stipends to eligible teachers beginning in 2019. Teachers in Giles are engaged in professional development through CDA certification or working on college-level classes in early childhood development at New River Community College.
"PERC" is being developed in Pulaski County, replicating the stipend program developed for Giles County. Pulaski Early Educators Rewards for Credentials will bring the same income supplements to full-time eligible teachers as fund-raising goals are achieved over the next 6-9 months. Financial support from individuals, charitable organizations, and grants are being sought to fund PERC.
ABCs is grateful to Virginia Quality for their commitment to professional development of early educators and childcare providers. Partnering with Virginia Quality has enabled ABCs to develop the eligibility criteria for the teacher stipend program. Virginia Quality will be tracking data for evidence-based outcomes from this incentive program in both counties. This strategy for improving childcare for infant-5 year olds is already established as statewide, state-funded initiatives in many states. ABCs and Virginia Quality feel confident that the teacher stipend pilot programs will help shape decision making in Virginia's approach to quality early childhood education.