SAN JOSE, CA – On Wednesday, the Santa Clara County Board of Education (SCCBOE) passed several resolutions to support legislation aligned with the Strong Start Coalition, supporting early learning.
"On May 23, the Strong Start Coalition participated in Legislative Advocacy Day in Sacramento. The group discussed relevant early learning and education legislation with elected officials as part of a comprehensive legislative agenda. In reviewing previous Board action, AB 60 - 12 Month Eligibility, AB 605 - Birth to First Grade License Option, and AB 1520 - Lifting Children and Families Out of Poverty Act of 2017 did not have a resolution or letter of support," said County Superintendent of Schools, Jon R. Gundry.
"By signing these resolutions, both the Santa Clara County Office of Education and the Board of Education publicly support legislation which strengthens our ability to provide a strong early learning foundation to every child in the state," Gundry added.
Assembly Bill 60 – Child Care: 12 Month Eligibility would align California law with the Federal Child Care and Development Block Grant Act of 2014 Child Care Development Fund (CCDF). This legislation protects families eligible for child care assistance by updating the State Median Income thresholds and guaranteeing eligibility for child care for 12 months upon receiving a child care subsidy and eliminating required interim reporting during the 12 month-eligibility period. It would also protect the more the $500 million the state receives in federal funding through the CCDF and prevent disqualification from additional block grant funding.
The SCCBOE passed a Resolution supporting Assembly Bill 605 – Day Care Centers: Birth to First Grade License Option. This bill would simplify the administrative and financial burden placed on child-care facilities by the necessity to apply for multiple licenses.
"Giving providers the option of an integrated license would allow providers the ability to manage school year enrollment better, so that their facility can reach maximum utilization, thus serving more children and families and encourage more infant care by reducing cost and other barriers," said Gundry.
A resolution was passed to support Assembly Bill 1520 – Lifting Children and Families out of Poverty Act of 2017.
"California has the highest rate of child poverty in the nation according to the U.S. Census Bureau's Supplemental Poverty Measure which translates to 1 in 5 children. This legislation seeks to lift 1 million California children out of poverty by reducing child poverty by 50 percent over the next 20 years and provides a comprehensive framework of research-backed solutions to achieve it," said Gundry.
This legislation would create a task force supporting California's efforts on lifetime wellness, self-sufficiency, and economic strength in families and communities throughout the state as well as produce annual and biannual reporting examining the state budget's impact on child poverty and the impact of current and potential investments.
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Strong Start of Santa Clara County is a coalition of community leaders, individuals, and organizations committed to expanding access to high quality early learning opportunities for all children age 0 to 8 in Santa Clara County.