May 17, 2020
If you are an approved epcc site, You should have received an email from MSDE last night sharing the opportunity to accept children of families falling under the Governor’s Phase 1 recovery. The phase 1 families would be responsible for paying your tuition fees. The limit on ratios is still the same, no change yet. Additionally, the email does not state that epcc payments for essential will stop today. Dr Salmon and MSDE will be conveying more information related to essential personnel payments soon. The acceptance of phase 1 workers children, if you have room based on limited current capacity, has nothing to do with eliminating current essential personnel families or changes in your current payment for epcc children. The phase 1 families will have to pay tuition. More news will be delivered soon from the state.
Child care that is currently closed will receive emails from licensing specialist next week (Monday is the goal explained at a meeting on Friday) about the opportunity to reopen, should you choose. Not required. More to come Monday.
May 15, 2020
Confused about the Payroll Protection Program and Economic Injury Disaster Loan programs? This document gives a side by side comparison.
Looking for guidance to decide if you're ready to open or re-open your program? The CDC offers guidelines to follow.
May 13, 2020
A summary of updates from MSCCA
MSDE informed MSCCA and others on a call today that regulated child care programs may apply to become Essential Personnel Child Care sites now. You should receive this info in an email from licensing specialist. If not, please contact your specialist immediately if you choose to apply.
MSCCA and our Coalition of Associations has been able to apply and receive a Governor Proclamation each year to recognize child care providers/early childhood educators on May 8 and share the Proclamation at our annual Conference by the Sea each Spring. We submitted the application and just received the official proclamation on Friday and shared widely with the community. We continue to recognize your work today and every day.
MSCCA raffled off prizes each day during teacher appreciation week to members as a small token of appreciation. (prizes will be mailed directly)
Monday winner of new touch free scan thermometer sponsored by MSCCA Business member, GO2’s: Peppertree Children’s Center
Tuesday winner of Lakeshore Counting Cones Set and Panera Gift Card sponsored by MSCCA ED Chris Peusch: Sacred Heart School-Joyful Hearts Pre-K
Wednesday- Hump Day Winners: 100 MSCCA Members receiving free COK training presented by Lite Brite, LLC from 6:30-8:30 p.m.
Thursday winner of Kaplan Company Gift Cards and Dunkin Donuts Gift card sponsored by MSCCA Business Member Kaplan Company -Julie Dobies: Joy Kids Central Ave.
Friday winner of Fun in the Sun Pamper Me Gift Bag sponsored by MSCCA Board Member and Business Member Innovations in Education, Randi Albertsen: Hilltop Child Care Center
Governor Hogan Roadmap to Recovery
Governor Hogan released on April 24, 2020 his 3 phases for recovery.
Child Care remains open for Essential Personnel families which may be an extension of the first phase of recovery. Child Care is listed in phase two, but still waiting on clarity and guidelines for capacity. We need to be open in first and second phases in order for families to return to work. Limited capacities and physical space must be addressed as more families go back to work. Surveying your families to determine their plans to return or if current EPCC/EPSA families plan to return to their previous program or will there be space to continue in your program? Strategies including, consistently communicating/engaging with your families, surveying their needs/plans/comfort levels, using distance learning techniques, sharing through emails, letters and videos your excellent health and safety practices including; taking temperature of children and staff at numerous times daily, curbside/kiss and go drop off and pick up procedures, wearing masks, increased cleaning and handwashing, social distancing practices and more, all will begin to alleviate the fears as Maryland moves into recovery phases. We need to stand with families and work together with decision makers to support and stabilize child care in Maryland. The PPP loans have specific restrictions and requirements for the forgiveness component. The coordination of recovery is paramount and the economy depends on us!
Read Governor Hogan’s Roadmap to Recovery:
The Governor has also vetoed some expensive bills including Kirwan.
MSCCA has been advocating at all levels to get payments to child care programs. Dr. Salmon shared information related to child care payments at Governor’s press conference.
$34 million paid to EPCC and EPSA sites caring for Essential Personnel children. $8 million meals were served to school age children and public schools in Maryland will not reopen, but will continue distance learning. Here are slides from press conference today.
Unfortunately, MSCCA is hearing from child care community and from MSDE as they are fielding thousands of calls and emails about the many errors in payment.
They are working on addressing all through phone bank and email system. Please refer to this form posted on MSDE website for corrections to assist you.
We have shared many MSDE updates and FAQ’s- please refer to the MSDE/OCC COVID 19 website for more updates and resources.
Maryland Kindergarten Readiness Data Report! You are amazing. MSCCA uses this data from the Kindergarten Readiness Report with legislators often to show how you prepare children for kindergarten and life.
Free MSCCA Training for Members! MSCCA has offered training and resources for members during crisis and to supplement hours needed by members for Credentialing as the MSCCA Conference is traditionally the first weekend in May. To date we have provided two approved COK virtual free trainings for close to 200 people and two free informational sessions including a legal webinar and a town hall panel with experts for over 200 people. MSCCA is working on at least two more free COK virtual trainings. Two more will be offered and are presently scheduled for Friday, May 22nd from 1-4 p.m., presented by Randi Albertsen, Innovations in Education and another for early June presented by Better Futures. More to come!
PAU news! MSDE Credentialing Branch – EPCC and EPSA sites staff eligible for 2 PAU’s for your service.
EPCC/EPSA Sits needing cleaning and PPE supplies: MEMA is reaching out to the child care community to assist with needed supplies and coordinate pick up/drop off. As more become available, MSCCA will share immediately. We are looking into state level procurement for supplies and more resources to assist the community.
May 6, 2020
Survey to Strengthen Child Care
Maryland Family Network is conducting a survey to learn how the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) outbreak is continuing to impact child care providers in Maryland. Your answers will help inform recovery efforts and make the case for more help for those providing services to young children and their families. All answers are confidential. Click here to complete the survey.
Mema is still able to take orders for supplies and asked MSCCA to continue to share the donation request form with child care programs serving essential personnel. Mema has filled almost 300 Child care program orders and coordinated drop off and pick up procedures. Please order while supplies are available !
May 4, 2020
Here's a story to share with children on wearing a mask.
Check out this document on Calculating your Loan Forgiveness Under the PPP.
April 30, 2020
FAQs for Maryland's EPCC payment process.
Need PPE supplies? Reach out to Kevin Cook at Quality Logo Products
(866) 312-5646 x 245 • Fax (866) 314-5646
email@example.com • www.qualitylogoproducts.com
April 28, 2020
Need help with the EPCC invoices? Fill out this form for assistance.
The slides from the free family engagement webinar can be found here.
A MESSAGE FROM THE COMPTROLLER OF MARYLAND...
To Maryland's amazing, deserving childcare providers who are caring for our state's essential workers' children - Thank you for your patience and your service. Here's a photo of your checks going out the door of our building right now. (That's Robert Rosati of our mailroom team - kudos to them too!)
After a weekend of MSDE employees working to get the payments set for us to process, today we have processed 3,186 child care provider invoices, which translated into 2,331 payments in the form of either direct deposit or paper check in the total amount of $6,454,047. We expect thousands more tomorrow and your $2,000 grants to be mailed by week's end.
To the employees of our General Accounting Division and Director Sandy Zinck and Deputy Comptroller Sharonne Bonardi - thank you for keeping our promise to turn these payments around within hours of our ability to do so.
We are in this together to help these vital daycare providers to #KeepTheLightsOn. Thank you! Maryland State Child Care Association Brian Doory Sandy Carricato Zinck Sharonne Bonardi Lora Rakowski-Pickle Maryland State Department of Education
UPDATE: Many childcare providers have asked why doesn’t the system reflect the payments that went out today? Good question! Updates to the GAD One Stop System will be visible late tonight once the mainframe batch cycle has been run.
Statement from Chris Peusch, Executive Director of MSCCA
April 24, 2020
MSCCA has been working diligently to get the word out to the media about the challenges childcare programs are facing during this time. Payments to providers for serving EPPC have been delayed. We have also been actively communicating with state legislators to inform them of the challenges that providers are facing and are asking for support from Annapolis to support the childcare industry so we can survive and safely reopen when the time comes.
Two of our Board members were on WBAL on April 23. Today, our very own Carrie Youssi and one of our Board members will be on WJZ!
Article that appeared in the Baltimore Sun.
Article and report from WBAL.
PLEASE send letters to your legislators and the Governor to get the message out that Annapolis needs to support the childcare community. Start with this template or create your own.
The MSCCA website has a long list of resources for childcare related to COVIC-19. Check it out!
April 23, 2020
FREE training for MSCCA members on April 29 at 11am for Directors and Owners
Guidance from Maryland Department of Health on face coverings for childcare.
MSDE has partnered with local grocery and big box stores to provide support to childcare providers serving Essential Personnel. Use this letter for support.
April 17, 2020
A PODCAST TO CHECK OUT FROM THE COMMITTEE FOR ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT (CED, https://www.ced.org/)
How Child Care Businesses Can Survive COVID-19: Considerations for Childcare centers
MSDE has provided a video to explain how to complete the EPCC invoice.
April 14, 2020
Calling all Maryland voters to sign the petition to add Child Care workers to the list of essential workers for the Heroes Fund currently in Congress BY APRIL 16TH!
Governor Hogan has passed an Executive Order recognizing child care workers as essential and we would like Congress to do the same, so we need your help. Please share!
Please share and sign our petition to Congress.
April 13, 2020
We asked the MSCCA Baltimore city leadership chapter to prepare a quick video tutorial on the new forms for the EPCC so payments can get received, as there is confusion about the process.
April 10, 2020
Governor Hogan held a press conference today to provide an update on the fiscal status of the state and the financial burden of COVID-19, along with steps he is taking to support constiuents. A detailed summary can be found here.
Much anticipated clarification from MSDE regarding ratios in childcare, limiting total number of children and adults in any room to no more than 10 people. The clarifications can be found here.
Beware of a SCAM targeting childcare providers and COVID-19 payments. Details of the alert can be found here.
Webinar opportunity on Monday, April 13 with guidance from the CDC on COVID-19 and childcare. Register here.
April 7, 2020
MSCCA working for you - See the attached OpEd posted in the Baltimore Sun regarding the existence of childcare when the pandemic is over.
Latest updates from Maryland Department of Health and MSDE can be found here.
April 6, 2020
Some additional guidance and resources to preserve childcare businesses from First Children's Finance.
April 5, 2020
Here's the link to the application, forms, and additional guidance for becoming an Emergency Personnel Child Care provider.
Check out this article on parents paying tuition when childcare is closed.
Upcoming Virtual Town Hall
April 3, 2020 URGENT!!
We need Child Care Providers and Programs to Advocate NOW!
The coronavirus pandemic has changed our way of life for an indefinite period of time. Families and child care programs across the country are struggling with how to adjust to this new reality and what it means for children, especially when this crisis ends.
A number of national organizations are forecasting that many providers will close because they cannot afford to remain open, leaving many parents without a child care center when they will need it most - at the other side of this COVID-19 crisis. This will cause a further disruption to our economy when everyone will need to get back to work and help our economy recover.
Maryland must act now to prevent this. We need you to help. Use the Template for Constituent Provider letter below or create your own with a similar message for your personal story. MOST importantly CONTACT your elected officials and tell them to support all child care providers in the state so they survive this crisis and can help support the economic recovery. We have also provided a link to easily find your Delegate, Senator and Governor's contact information including email addresses.
It is vital that the state come up with a plan to keep child care programs open so that parents will have a place to send their children when they go back to work. Other states are doing it. We must as well.
The Maryland State Child Care Association is advocating for you during this crisis. We are in regular contact with the Maryland State Department of Education, Governor Hogan’s office, and the Maryland General Assembly to let them know your perspective and your challenges. It is time for you to act and we are making advocating as easy as possible.
Together, standing with our more than 7,000 licensed/registered programs serving over 120,000 children, we are seeking more support from our state so parents will have their child care program of choice available when this crisis subsides and all Marylanders can return to work.
Leaders in our state must hear from YOU. You are the constituent, the voter. Your voice and issues matter and this is a critical time in the world and in our industry.
Please use the template letter below to help tell your story. Adapt it as you wish and send it as an email to the Governor and your elected Maryland representatives.
They need to hear from you soon.
You can also post your email on social media & tag your elected officials.
Go to MdElect.net to find contact info for your representatives.
Tell your leaders you are worried about the future of child care. Don’t wait until it’s too late! Send the email as soon as you are able, today, tomorrow and beyond until there is more support for child care.
We can’t care for children if you the state does not care for us.
Please be sure to use the attached fillable PDF to copy the text and paste into your email (which is preferred) or fill out and attach. Be sure to enter in the bottom section with all of your information such as name, name of business, business address AND home address.
Template to tell your story.
March 31, 2020
MSCCA detailed daily update for March 31, 2020 can be found here.
MD Dept. of Labor, Division of Unemployment issues updated process for filing a claim to help handle the high volume of claimants during this time.
They also point out: Please be assured that Maryland does not have a waiting week like many other states do. No matter when or how they file, Marylanders become eligible for benefits starting after the day after they separated from employment. If you are eligible, you will be paid for all benefits due.
Their website covers the latest procedure.
We also have a summary of the CARES act here.
March 28, 2020
Lots of information and updates regarding childcare closures, EPCC sites, and the stimulus package.
See the March 27 MSCCA update here.
Information on PAYMENTS TO STATES FOR THE CHILD CARE AND DEVELOPMENT BLOCK GRANT can be found here.
Estelle Mitchell, Legal Fellow, Income Security & Child Care/Early Learning at the National Women’s Law Center, offered this summary of the third COVID-19 stimulus package (the "CARES Act") that was just signed into law.
The full bill text & a section-by-section summary will be loaded into the group library.
Here are the relevant highlights:
1. Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (the “CARES Act”)
A. Child Care
i. $3.5 billion in emergency funding for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) available through September 30, 2021
CLASP has pulled together new estimates that show how much states can expect to receive in emergency child care funding, which states can use to:
a. provide continued payments and assistance to child care providers in the case of decreased enrollment or closures related to coronavirus, and to assure they are able to remain open or reopen as appropriate;
b. provide child care assistance, without regard to income, to health care sector employees, emergency responders, sanitation workers, and other workers deemed essential during the response to the coronavirus; and
c. provide funding to child care providers who were not participating in subsidy prior to the public health emergency for the purposes of cleaning and sanitation and other activities necessary to maintain or resume the operation of programs. To see the estimates and read more, click https://www.clasp.org/publications/fact-sheet/35-billion-child-care-coronavirus-package-not-enough-how-states-will-fare
ii. $750 million for Head Start
B. Paid Leave - Not much change from the last stimulus package, Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)
i. No expansions of paid lead/paid sick day coverage from FFCRA (maintains 500+ employee carve-out and no new FMLA purposes) and no changes in reimbursement rates/caps.
ii. No major limitations or additional carve-outs to FFCRA. There are concerns about broad OMB allowance to exempt executive branch employees.
iii. Good change on employer tax credit provision allowing for advance, rather than reimbursement, of paid leave/paid sick day cost.
C. Unemployment Insurance (UI)
i. $250 billion in temporary enhancements to the UI system through 2020, including:
a. $600 increase in the weekly UI checks of unemployed workers;
b. Special disaster relief program, Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) that expands UI coverage to self-employed workers, gig workers, and independent contractors; and
c. A temporary 13-week extension of UI benefits.
ii. For more information on the UI provisions in the CARES Act from the National Employment Law Center (NELP), click https://www.nelp.org/publication/unemployment-insurance-provisions-coronavirus-aid-relief-economic-security-cares-act/
D. Recovery rebates
i. The legislation provides for direct payments to individuals called “recovery rebates.”
ii. The rebates are worth a maximum of $1,200 per person ($2,400 for a married couple filing a joint tax return).
a. An additional $500 per dependent child age 16 or under
iii. For more information, such as who is eligible, who is left out, and how the rebates will be issued, click https://nwlc-ciw49tixgw5lbab.stackpathdns.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/03/COVID-19-%E2%80%9CRecovery-Rebates%E2%80%9D-in-the-CARES-Act.pdf
E. U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) loans/grants
i. $10 billion for SBA emergency grants to small businesses, including non-profits
a. Businesses with fewer than 500 employees could be eligible for up to $10 million in forgivable small business loans
ii. The Bipartisan Policy Center and Committee for Economic Development has put together a thorough summary of these provisions specifically for child care providers, to read the summary
2. Other important federal updates
A. The IRS has extended the tax filing deadline to July 15th. For more IRS-related coronavirus information, click https://www.irs.gov/coronavirus
B. The Department of Education announced last week that it will stop collecting on student loans in default. This break began on March 13th and will last for a minimum of 60 days. To read more, click https://www.npr.org/sections/coronavirus-live-updates/2020/03/25/821383576/education-dept-will-stop-collecting-on-student-borrowers-in-default
C. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced that it will temporarily halt most enforcement inside the U.S. during the coronavirus outbreak. For more information, click https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/ice-halting-most-immigration-enforcement/2020/03/18/d0516228-696c-11ea-abef-020f086a3fab_story.html
C. The Social Security Administration (SSA) has suspended medical continuing disability reviews until further notice. For more information, click https://www.ssa.gov/coronavirus/
3. Next steps & what you can do
A. While we are appreciative of the $3.5 billion in dedicated support for the child care industry through the Child Care and Development Block Grant, it is far less than the $50 billion that is needed to keep the nation’s child care system afloat. We know that there will be a fourth COVID-19 stimulus package, and NWLC’s priorities remain the same. As we mentioned in last week’s update, it’s critical that members of Congress are hearing from their constituencies about the need to have robust funding for the child care sector in the fourth stimulus package. If you have capacity, please:
i. Work with media to get stories about the needs of child care providers, educators, and front-line workers in the public sphere in your districts and States.
ii. Work with your governor to speak out on the need for federal funding as part of the fourth stimulus package.
iii. Share the needs in your district/state with your federal delegation with an ask for federal funding to be included in the fourth stimulus package. This could include putting out statements that you share with your delegation, calling/mailing them, organizing a sign-on letter with other folks in your area or a petition, setting up teleconferences between providers and parents in the state and your delegation, and more.
B. Webinar: CACFP during COVID-19: New USDA flexibilities offer program options
i. This webinar is an opportunity to learn about new flexibilities designed to support CACFP providers, programs, and sponsors in offering access to nutritious meals for children in the current COVID-19 public health emergency. Child care centers, providers, afterschool programs, sponsoring organizations and shelters can all learn something important from this webinar. On this webinar USDA will explain the new waivers allowing CACFP sites to make adjustments to normal operating rules. The waivers offer options to:
a. simplify food procurement,
b. use meal pattern flexibilities when food supplies are disrupted,
c. suspend normal meal-times,
d. offer “grab and go” take home meals or delivered meals instead of on-site meal service (non-congregate feeding), and
e. drop the activity requirement for at-risk afterschool programs.
Date and Time: Tuesday, March 31, 2020, 2:00 Eastern, 1:00 Central, 11:00 Pacific Time. Register at: https://frac.peachnewmedia.com/store/seminar/seminar.php?seminar=154332
March 27, 2020
Dr. Salmon has issued another update related to the Governor’s executive order stating: All Child Care Providers to be Closed by the end of the day Friday, March 27th Except Those Serving Essential Personnel. Beginning at the end of the day on Friday, March 27, 2020, all child care programs are to be closed.During this State of Emergency, child care programs have been established by the State to serve only designated essential personnel. Access that information here.
The Governor’s Order that bans more than 10 people gathering is still required. MSDE has interpreted as 9 children and 1 staff or any combination with a limit of 10 in self- contained classroom. Please discuss with your licensing specialist for clarification.
Maryland Small Business COVID-19 Emergency Relief Grant Fund Details can be found here https://commerce.maryland.gov/fund/maryland-small-business-covid-19-emergency-relief-grant-fund
Details About Filing COVID-19 related unemployment claims Fact scan be found here http://www.labor.maryland.gov/employment/uicovidfaqs.shtml
First Five Years Fund provided a summary of what child care financial relief that is in included in COVID-19 Stimulus Package Read the details here www.ffyf.org/breaking-congress-includes-crucial-relief-for-child-care-industry-in-covid-19-stimulus-package/
EPCC – Updates related to Child Care and serving Essential Personnel
In order to be approved to provide care for essential personnel children you must complete the application and submit to your licensing specialist or the regional manager if you do not have a specialist assigned to your program.
Some questions MSCCA has received answers to:
Can we provide care for essential personnel for a parent that is working from home?Yes
Can we provide care if only one parent is essential personnel? Yes
Please refer to documents for more information:
Letter About EPCC
Child Care Scholarships/Subsidies
MSCCA received updates today from MSDE OCC related to Child Care Scholarships. MSDE states now that the Governor and MSDE have closed child care except for essential personnel, scholarship/subsidies will be paid based on enrollment during the emergency closure period.
Furlough vs. Layoff
Government entities typically use the term furlough for situations that are temporary with their employee's. It basically means your job will be here when things return to normal. Individuals that are furloughed without pay are eligible for unemployment. Some child care programs are reducing hours for those employees that they still need and or that want to still work. These individuals are still eligible for unemployment to make up the difference in their pay. In short when you furlough an employee you are not severing the relationship with them. When you lay them off you are severing the relationship and are not obligated to call them back. IN BOTH CASES the employee can file for unemployment. Feds are still working to pass the $2.2 trillion relief package, but if all passes as expected, as of April 1st your employee's will be eligible to receive whatever they are eligible for in unemployment plus an additional $600 for up to 16 weeks. In some states this will be more than you currently pay some of your employee's. Received from National Child Care Association and Paychex.com
March 26, 2020
News and events regarding COVID-19 are changing almost by the hour. The impact on childcare is huge and daunting. We rely on guidance from the state government and MSDE, and communication is not always open and clear. MSCCA is in constant communicaiton with the Governor's office and MSDE. In an effort to keep as many childcare providers informed as possible, MSCCA is posting daily updates on the Go2s website and will be sending emails to all members.
We know we are still not reaching everyone. In effort to reach more providers, I am trying to post information in multiple locations, as quickly as possible. Check here for daily updates. You can also follow my Facebook page, Innovations in Education, LLC.
If you have questions or concerns, please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
If your program has been impacted by COVID-19 mandated closures or staff furloughs, you may be eligible for compensation through disaster relief from Maryland Department of Labor or the Maryland Department of Commerce. and/ or federal government relief programs.
If you are self-employed or do not have employees other than yourself, you may be eligible for a low interest loan through the Small Business Administraion.
MSDE updates and press releases can be found on their home page and on the Divison of Early Childhood site.