The Division of Child Development and Early Education (DCDEE) has updated the ChildCareStrongNC Public Health Toolkit (also available in Spanish) to reflect recent changes in guidance, clarify language, and be responsive to questions that have arisen in the child care field.
The April edition of the ChildCareStrongNC Public Health Toolkit includes the following updates:
Change in terminology from “social distance” to “physical distance” (throughout the Toolkit)
- Clarification on Daily Health Screenings (page 5 & 16)
- Updated Summary Table for Returning from Exclusion (page 7-8 & 16-17)
- Resources related to the COVID-19 vaccines (page 18)
- Added definition for “fully vaccinated” (page 25)
If you have questions about these updates, please contact your child care health consultant.
DCDEE has released important updated COVID-19 Child Care Payment Policy information. The key updates in this edition are as follows:
- the operational grants awarded during the months of March and/or April 2021 can be used to address any current lead mitigation costs that occur in the month in which the grant was awarded.
- DCDEE will be covering the cost of the parent co-payment during the months of March and April 2021.
On December 27, 2020, the COVID-19 Economic Relief Bill that was signed into law, allocating funds to states to provide immediate assistance to child care providers. North Carolina has allocated some of these funds for operational grants for licensed child care providers, as well as those child care providers who operate under a notice of compliance. DCDEE is issuing these grants in a manner consistent with the formula used in distributing the operational grants previously. The operational grants for March and April 2021 are now available for licensed child care providers to access.
As North Carolina continues to remain in Phase 3 of its reopening plan, flexibility with some child care requirements will continue to be available; however, there are some requirements that will be reinstated effective March 1, 2021.
On February 10, 2021, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) announced plans for how the state will move to Group 3 for COVID-19 vaccines. Because supply is still very limited and the population of frontline essential workers is so large, NC will begin with anyone working in child care or in PreK - 12 schools starting on February 24, 2021.
DHHS drafted How Child Care Programs Can Help Get Child Care Staff Vaccinated, which contains detailed information about how DHHS is working with its partners on supporting child care and school staff in accessing vaccines. One of those partners, the local child care resource & referral agencies (CCR&R), will work with child care program and staff to make sure information about vaccination events and appointment blocks is able to child care program staff. Someone from the local CCR&R will contact you to begin collecting staff contact information and link you to local vaccination events. Smart Start is also working with local vaccine providers to help make sure they’re ready to give shots to child care staff.