How might we improve the quality of national home-based child care?
Quality child care is vital to the mental, physical and social-emotional development of children. Across the country, millions of parents and guardians are choosing home-based childcare (HBCC) for their infants and toddlers, rather than child care centers. These providers range from licensed caretakers operating small businesses in their homes, to care provided by family, friends, and neighbors and are more likely to have a range of ages in their care whereas centers have rooms of children with one age in them.
HBCC services also serve as an essential support for working families. With an ever-increasing reliance on home-based caregivers to provide child care and a shrinking field of providers, it is even more important to have systems in place that support and follow the core components of high-quality child care so all children can thrive.
The Family Child Care Quality Improvement Learning Collaborative Pilot brought together HBCC providers and the agencies that support them to learn to harness QI to improve the quality of toddler care in mixed age group settings.
Shift collaborated with Erikson and other subject matter experts in HBCC to design and implement a pilot learning collaborative.
Shift worked with the planning team to create and refine the theory of change with aims, measures and change ideas, design network learning structures and events, and to teach quality improvement methods. Participants reflected that improvement methods introduced through this pilot learning collaborative helped them to identify possibilities for changes, build their agency to implement those changes, and quickly adjust approaches as needed.
This work was funded by the Pritzker Foundation.