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I_I_SchoolReadiness_2018A 08/08/2018 09:19:57 AM Committee Summary

Date 08/08/2018
Martinez Humenik *
Merrifield E
Pettersen X
Wilson X
Priola E
Buckner X
Time 09:19:57 AM to 01:09:04 PM
Place SCR 357
This Meeting was called to order by Buckner
This Report was prepared by Rachel Kurtz-Phelan
Hearing Items Action Taken
Two-Generation Approach in Action Committee Discussion Only
Child Fatality Prevention Recommendations Committee Discussion Only
Update from Family Resource Center Association Committee Discussion Only
Update from Early Childhood Council Leadership Alliance Committee Discussion Only
School Readiness, Literacy, and Preschool Committee Discussion Only

Two-Generation Approach in Action - Committee Discussion Only

09:21:12 AM  
Representative Buckner, Chair, called the
meeting to order.
09:22:25 AM  
Mary Alice Cohen, Two-Generation (two-gen)
Initiatives Coordinator for the Colorado Department of Human Services (DHS),
Victor Vialpando-Nunez, Dean of Academic Affairs for the Community College
of Aurora (CCA), and Ethan Hemming, President & CEO of Warren Village,
came to the table to begin their presentation.  Ms. Cohen explained
the history of the two-gen approach and distributed a handout to the committee
[Attachment A].  She told the committee that early childhood programs
run along the spectrum of child-focused, child-focused with parent elements,
parent-focused with child elements, and parent-focused.  She stated
that the two-gen approach provides opportunities to meet the needs of both
parents and children.  Ms. Cohen spoke about looking at the needs
of both and figuring out a way to harness solutions to address both groups
effectively.  She spoke about emerging research supporting the benefits
of a two-gen approach, and the return on investment of early childhood
09:30:33 AM  
Ms. Cohen explained the integrated approach
to helping families, and stated that families are able to reach major economic
milestones three to four times more quickly if they recieve more than one
service.  She said that when all of these services work together,
it supports the whole family on the path towards success.  She discussed
services in the realm of early childhood education, social capital, postsecondary
and employment pathways, economic assets, and health and well-being.  Ms.
Cohen answered questions from the commitee about funding sources for the
two-gen approach, including county Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
(TANF) funding, nonprofit organizations, private foundations, and early
childhood and home visiting federal funding.  She spoke about the
importance of bringing community leaders together to access the community
funding already in existance.
09:35:16 AM  
Ms. Cohen explained that the two-gen approach
is focused on the needs and goals of each individual family.  She
said that in 60 percent of families her department is working with, at
least one parent is working toward obtaining a General Education Diploma
(GED), and in about 20 percent of families, at least one parent is working
towards a short-term post-secondary certificate.  She spoke about
the two-gen programs at the DHS, including early childhood programs such
as Colorardo Shines, economic supports like the transitional food program,
employment programs including the Strenghtening Working Families Initiative,
and health and well-being programs such as SafeCare Colorado.  She
answered questions about the connection between the two-gen approach and
Family, Friend, and Neighbor care networks.  She told the committee
that DHS is releasing a Request for Proposals this fall for a grant to
community and business members to come up with ways to support and innovate
around two-gen work in Colorado.
09:43:40 AM  
Ms. Cohen discussed several current state-level
programs and activities pertaining to the two-gen approach.
09:47:20 AM  
Mr. Hemming began his presentation.  He
spoke about the mission of Warren Village, which is to provide affordable
housing, child and parent advocacy, and family support services.  He
told the commission that Warren Village has a learning center on-site to
provide child care and learning services for 13 hours a day so that residents
can work and/or go to school.  Mr. Hemming answered questions about
how the program is funded.  He spoke about the need to meet people
where they are at any given time, and the importance of providing individualized
programs based on the needs of each parent and child.
09:57:48 AM  
Mr. Hemming responded to questions concerning
how to ensure the families in the program are working towards degrees or
training programs that are applicable in today's workforce, and how to
continue to help these families after they leave Warren Village.  

10:02:25 AM  
Mr. Vialpando-Nunez began his presentation.
 He provided several highlights of the Strenghtening Working Families
Initiative (SWFI) grant that CCA received to implement direct wrap-around
services to help students and families get degrees that lead to high-paying
jobs.  Mr. Vialpando-Nunez mentioned the initiatives CCA is implementing
to foster a two-gen approach by creating partnerships with childcare centers,
employers, and other community organizations.  He spoke about the
SWFI Child Care Learning Community, a group that meets quarterly to come
up with a long-term sustainable model for the two-gen approach.  

Child Fatality Prevention Recommendations - Committee Discussion Only

10:20:42 AM  
Kate Jankovsky, Child Fatality Prevention
System Manager, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, came
to the table to begin her presentation.  She provided background information
on the Child Fatality Prevention System, and discussed the importance of
using a public health approach, shared protective factors. and data in
order to pinpoint certain trends in child fatalities.  
10:29:21 AM  
Ms. Jankovsky reviewed the department's
recommendations for preventing child maltreatment, which include behavioral
health promotion, youth suicide prevention, primary seat belt laws, paid
leave for families, evidence-based home visitation, quality affordable
child care, and education on firearm safety.  Ms. Jankovsky answered
questions from the committee on paid family leave, and why youth suicide
and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) rates are on the rise in Colorado.
 She discussed further the need for a primary seat belt law in Colorado.
10:46:47 AM  
Ms. Jankovsky spoke about the department's
data quality recommendations, which include requiring the use of suicide
and SIDS death investigation forms in all counties, and stated that public
data is now available on the types of child fatalities across the state.
 Allison Gonzales, Manager of the Administrative Review Division in
the Department of Human Services (CDHS), began her portion of the presentation.
 She provided background info about the CDHS Child Fatality Review
Team, which is made up of representatives from a variety of disciplines,
who review incidents of fatal, near-fatal, and egregious abuse or neglect
cases.  She provided an overview of the 2017 incidents that were reviewed
by the child fatality review team.
10:56:03 AM  
Ms. Gonzales answered questions about improving
service delivery to children and families, and about how to mitigate the
stress level and work load of caseworkers dealing with these types of cases.
 She spoke about the recommendations provided by the Child Fatality
Review Team, which can be divided into individual policy findings and larger
systemic recommendations.   She discussed a partnership between the
department and the medical community to train emergency and urgent care
medical personnel to screen for abuse and neglect.
11:07:17 AM  
Ms. Gonzales explained that the CDPHE Child
Fatality Prevention System State Review Team and the CDHS Child Fatality
Review Team are tasked with making joint recommendations for the prevention
of child fatalities.  She stated that the number one 2017 recommendation
is to raise awareness and provide education to child welfare providers
and community agencies on safe firearm storage in order to prevent child
deaths involving firearms.  The presenters answered questions from
the committee.

Update from Family Resource Center Association - Committee Discussion Only

11:16:54 AM  
Mark Kling, Executive Director of the Family
Resource Center Association (FRCA), came to the table to begin his presentation.
 Copies of his presentation and a handout were distributed to the
committee [Attachments B and C].  Mr. Kling spoke about the mission
of the FRCA, and thanked the committee for a letter it provided to the
Joint Budget Committee to support funding for Family Resource Centers (FRCs)
for family support case management.  He explained that the FRCA uses
a two-gen approach to provide multiple services and supports to families
through strengths-based, comprehensive, coordinated case management, acts
as a family-friendly access point to the wider community, is tailored to
the culture, resources, and needs of each community, and works one-on-one
with families to help them set and achieve transformative goals.  He
said there are 10 FRCs that are currently receiving state funding.  Mr.
Kling explained that FRCs are statutorily required to provide comprehensive
family support and case management, system navigation and resource referral,
parenting education, financial literacy, early childhood education, adult
education, workforce development, a food pantry, and emergency services.

11:23:59 AM  
Mr. Kling stated that several FRCs are
using models that are very similar to the Warren Village model of providing
housing in addition to other wraparound services. He answered questions
about the gap in available services between urban areas and rural and frontier
areas and about the need to improve communication to get information out
about available services to those who need them.  He spoke about the
need for additional resources to focus on capacity-building in the local
FRCs in order to improve access and communication.  He said families
who engage in family support services are assessed in 14 self-sufficiency
categories and five protective factors in order to reduce child abuse and
neglect.  Mr. Kling reiterated that only 10 of the 29 FRCs in Colorado
received state funding support.
11:33:33 AM  
Mr. Kling continued to discuss the need
for additional state funding and requested that the committee send a letter
to the Joint Budget Committee to request funding for additional FRCs.  He
answered questions from the committee about the lack of centers in the
eastern plains and mountain communities, and stated that the oversight
state agency for FRCs is the Office of Early Childhood in the Department
of Human Services.  

Update from Early Childhood Council Leadership Alliance - Committee Discussion Only

11:52:07 AM  
Liz Houston, Executive Director of the
Early Childhood Leadership Alliance (ECLA), came to the table along with
her colleagues, Stacy Petty and Heather Hanna, to begin her presentation.
 They distributed several handouts to the committee [Attachments D
through G].  Ms. Houston talked about why early childhood is important,
and stated that investment in early childhood yields long-term returns.
 She provided background information about ECLA and explained that
it is the association for Colorado's 34 Early Childhood Councils (councils).
 She explained the purpose and mission of the councils, and about
the work ECLA is doing to evaluate the effectiveness of their information
campaigns including developing a tracking tool to measure and demonstrate
councils' common indicators and collective work across counties.
12:01:52 PM  
Ms. Houston spoke about Colorado Shines
and the role that councils played in developing the Colorado Shines system.
 She stated that ECLA's future goals are focused on getting more children
with high needs into quality early childhood education programs.  Ms.
Petty, Director of the Rocky Mountain Region Early Childhood Council, spoke
about her council and about some of its successes and challenges.  She
talked about collaborating with other groups and organizations in her region.
 Ms. Houston stated that the purpose of the councils are to strengthen
and align resources in order to effectively serve young children, and to
increase and sustain the quality, accessibility, capacity, and affordability
of early childhood services for young children ages 0-5 and their families.
 She told the members that there are 34 councils in Colorado, serving
61 of 64 counties, and explained that each council is locally-organized
and locally-governed.  Ms. Houston answered questions about the intersection
between councils and FFN care.
12:12:39 PM  
Ms. Houston spoke about the councils' funding
sources and main functions, which include: partnerships and engagements;
professional development and leadership; capacity building and sustainability;
advocacy and policy development; and grant and fiscal management.  She
spoke about the Early Childhood Colorado Framework, and about the strengths
and challenges faced by councils since their development and implementation.
12:25:12 PM  
Ms. Hanna answered questions from the committee
about the types of individuals and groups with whom councils are required
to have working relationships.

School Readiness, Literacy, and Preschool - Committee Discussion Only

12:31:01 PM  
Representative Buckner invited the next
presenters to the table.  Floyd Cobb, Executive Director, Teaching
and Learning Unit, Colorado Department of Education (CDE), and Anji Gallanos,
P-3 Director, CDE, came to the table.  A copy of their presentation
was distributed to the commission members [Attachment H].  Dr. Cobb
spoke about CDE's strategic plan.  Jennifer Mello, Legislative Liaison,
CDE, answered questions about what CDE is doing to focus on teacher recruitment.
 Dr. Cobb spoke about the goals of the strategic plan, which include
all students reading by 3rd grade, improving schools, increasing postsecondary
attainment, and closing the achievement gap.  Ms. Gallanos spoke about
why it is important to build strong foundations in early childhood, and
the effect that families have on building strong foundations.  She
said closing an achievement gap is easier the earlier it is identified
and gets more difficult the longer you wait.  She discussed the importance
of a P-3 continuum which is the connection from preschool to third grade
in terms of literacy.  Dr. Cobb answered questions about the percentage
of third graders in the state who are reading at or above grade level.
 Ms. Gallanos explained the mission and composition of the P-3 office
in CDE.
12:43:09 PM  
Ms. Gallanos explained the early learning
theory of action to close achievement gaps.  She spoke about several
of the office's programs, and explained that total state preschool funding
is about $138 million, compared to $6.37 billion in total K-12 education
funding.  She talked about the Results Matter program, student retention
rates, and the intersection between those rates and those students with
no prior preschool program.  Ms. Gallanos spoke about kindergarten
readiness and Colorado's Achievement Plan for Kids (CAP4K),
12:50:08 PM  
Dr. Cobb spoke about the Reading to Ensure
Academic Development (READ) Act, which focuses on early literacy development
for all students and requires that a READ plan be development for students
identified as having a significant reading deficiency.  He explained
what districts can do with READ act funds, such as purchasing full-day
kindergarten or providing tutoring services in reading.  He said that
in 2016, approximately 19,000 students were identified as having a significant
reading deficiency.  Dr. Cobb spoke about the importance of early
intervention in closing achievement gaps and the success of early literacy
grants in reducing the number of students identified as having significant
reading deficiency.  Dr. Cobb and Ms. Gallanos answered questions
from the committee.

01:09:04 PM   Committee Adjourned

The effective date for bills enacted without a safety clause is August 7, 2024, if the General Assembly adjourns sine die on May 8, 2024, unless otherwise specified. Details