Letter from the Chair - January 31, 2013

Happy New Year!  2013 started for us, as I'm sure it did for many of you, very, very busy.  In the past month, the Council completed two major projects - the QRIS Strategic Plan and the Texas Core Competencies for Early Childhood Practitioners and Administrators.  In the next few weeks, we will be sharing even more exciting resources and information with you.

This month, the Council devoted significant time to our projects under the Workforce and Professional Development Subcommittee.  A key component of the new Texas Early Childhood Professional Development System (TECPDS) was completed and shared with the early childhood field - the new Texas Core Competencies for Early Childhood Practitioners and Administrators.  These Core Competencies replace the Core Knowledge and Skills Areas (CKAs) and will be the basis of TECPDS, guiding trainings for early childhood professionals.   Look for the Council to release a Request for Proposals later this week to hire a consultant to design and build TECPDS - a major undertaking.  Finally, the new Career Lattice is being finalized and will be released in February.

The Council also completed an important project this month - the QRIS Strategic Plan.  We will use the information collected from the strategic plan, most importantly information gathered from Texas stakeholders through meetings and online surveys, to develop recommendations for a statewide Quality Rating and Improvement System for Texas.

What's coming up next month?  The Council is working to finalize two resources for professionals - the Texas Early Childhood Career Lattice and the Texas Early Childhood Program Standards Comparison Tool.  The comparison tool will be hosted on the Texas Head Start State Collaboration Office website and will help users easily compare different program and accreditation standards.  We're excited to release this new resource in partnership with Raising Texas.  Both of these projects have been in development for over two years.  Also coming soon are the Texas Infant, Toddler, and Three-Year-Old Early Learning Guidelines - which are branded as Little Texans, Big Futures: Your Early Learning Guide for Infants, Toddlers, and Three Year Olds and we are very excited to share this new resource with our fellow Texans!

We will always announce the release of new resources and documents through our email listserv.  The Council will host a public meeting on Friday, February 22 in Austin.  I hope you can join us.  We will announce more details on the public meeting soon.

Thank you for your continued support of the Council and our work to improve school readiness in Texas.

Sincerely,

LaShonda Y. Brown

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