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ANNUAL REPORT

20 21

Ensuring all Oklahoma children are safe, healthy, eager to learn and ready to succeed by the time they enter school.


TABLE OF CONTENTS 2

Introduction

10

Budget and Funding

12

Achievements & Development of Voluntary Parent Involvement

16

Kindergarten Readiness

37

Third Grade Reading

39 Public Engagement 50 Resources

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ANNUAL REPORT 2021


Governor Stitt, President Pro Tempore Treat and Speaker McCall,

Thank you for allowing us to present the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness (OPSR) 2021 annual report to you and the Oklahoma legislature. This publication spotlights the tremendous work done by OPSR staff and our incredible partners as well as provides a report on the state of school readiness among Oklahoma children. By braiding public and private funding, OPSR leads Oklahoma in coordinating an early childhood mixed-delivery system that strengthens families and ensures all children are ready for school. Health, early care, learning and family support all influence a child’s readiness for school. Through these focuses, we monitor indicators and outcomes to inform action through policy changes, effective investments and quality improvements. We strive for an early childhood system that

consistently provides services and resources while ensuring equity, economic security and sustainable funding across the state. Though our state is viewed as a beacon of excellence when it comes to our early childhood system, there is always more we can do to ensure Oklahoma families have the knowledge they need to raise happy, healthy, thriving children. Oklahoma has more than 300,000 children under age 5. There are, however, only 88,918 licensed child care slots available and less than half of those are two- or three-star facilities. In fact, 55% of our state is considered a child care desert. As OPSR continues to push Oklahoma forward and coordinate an early childhood system that ensures ALL children are ready for school, we appreciate your support, leadership and commitment to building a strong foundation and bright future for Oklahoma’s children.

Annette Wisk Jacobi, J.D. OPSR Chair Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth Executive Director

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ABOUTOPSR In 2003, House Bill 1094 created the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness, adding Oklahoma to a growing list of states that recognized more action is required to successfully support families and children from birth to preschool and improving school readiness. OPSR's mission is to reduce barriers and increase access to and affordability of high-quality services. We facilitate collaborative planning and decision-making to increase coordination between programs to maximize the use of public and private funding and to pursue policies that improve learning opportunities and environments for Oklahoma’s children age 5 and under. Health, early care, learning and family support all influence a child’s readiness for school. Through this lens, we monitor indicators and outcomes to inform policy, effective investments and quality improvements. We strive to create alignment in Oklahoma's early childhood system to promote consistency in the delivery of services and resources while ensuring equity, economic security and sustainable funding across Oklahoma are prioritized.

OPSR is a public-private partnership with two branches: The OPSR Board was created under the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Act (Title 10 O.S. § 640), and is the designated body that serves as Oklahoma’s State Early Childhood Advisory Council as authorized under the federal Head Start Act of 2007 (PL 110-134, Section 642B). The OPSR Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit created under Oklahoma law (Title 10 O.S. § 640.3) to serve as a fiduciary partner with the OPSR Board and accepts both public and private funds to support early childhood initiatives.

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ANNUAL REPORT 2021

INTRODUCTION


EARLY CHILDHOOD COMMUNITY, It has been a great honor and privilege for me to join the OPSR team this year. When I joined OPSR in May, it was easy to recognize that the individuals who keep the OPSR wheels turning are passionate about early childhood and pushing our great state forward in improving school readiness. The 2021 fiscal year was difficult for everyone, particularly for families with young children. The pandemic has continued to shed light on areas where our state is falling short in preparing children for school and has in many ways widened the gap for children who were already at risk. At OPSR, we see an incredible opportunity and crucial need to make necessary adjustments that can continue to strengthen our early childhood system and better prepare Oklahoma to handle future disasters as well. The changes we make and challenges we tackle now can aid in recovery from the pandemic and better prepare our system for future disasters. I’d like to thank the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Board and Foundation members for their dedication to promoting school readiness in Oklahoma and their support to the OPSR staff, making the development of this report possible. We're thankful for policy makers, our partnership board, our foundation board and all our partners for allowing us to forge ahead in the work we do. Oklahoma’s early childhood community is strong, connected and mutually supportive of the diverse programs and services that promote child wellbeing and school readiness. Oklahoma should serve as a model for the nation when it comes to school readiness. With your help, I'm confident we can be, and I'm proud to serve this collaborative effort as we endeavor to reach that goal. With hope,

Carrie Williams Executive Director

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MISSION

Our mission is to lead Oklahoma in coordinating an early childhood system that strengthens families and ensures all children are ready for school.

5

VISION

Our vision is that all Oklahoma children are safe, healthy, eager to learn and ready to succeed by the time they enter school.

2000

Governor’s Task Force on Early Childhood formed by executive order of Governor Keating.

2001

Governor’s Task Force Report on Early Childhood is published highlighting strengths, weaknesses and needs of Oklahoma’s early childhood programs.

2002

Local grassroot efforts evolved through partnerships with United Way, Bank of America and Oklahoma Department of Human Resources.

2003

Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Act (HB 1094) is signed by Governor Henry.

2008

Governor Henry designates the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness as Oklahoma’s Early Childhood Advisory Council in accordance with federal law as a result of the reauthorization of the Head Start Act 2.

2009

Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness reauthorization (HB 1012) signed by Governor Henry.

2010

Oklahoma legislation designates the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness as the state’s Early Childhood Advisory Council (HB 3126).

2013

Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness reauthorization (HB 1699) signed by Governor Fallin.

2017

Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness reauthorization (HB 1996) signed by Governor Fallin.

2021

Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness reauthorization (HB 2965) signed by Governor Stitt.

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

INTRODUCTION


Conduct an assessment of existing public and private programs to determine their effectiveness and efficient use of state dollars. Implement a public engagement campaign and establish a structure to facilitate communication to develop and improve school readiness opportunities at the local level. Encourage public and private programs, services and initiatives be brought together to provide coordinated, community-based, effective and cost-efficient programs. Maximize the extent to which private-sector funding is leveraged and federal, state and local funds are coordinated with private funds. Establish standards of accountability in school readiness programs and policies and recognize and promote best practices. Submit an annual report to the legislature and governor.

Legislative Mandates of the Annual Report

RSPO

Legislative Duties Under the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Act

As part of the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Act, the Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness submits an annual report to the governor and legislature that shall include, but not be limited to the following information: Preparedness level of children entering kindergarten Status and results of the efforts of the board to engage the public regarding the care and education of children under age 5 and of the efforts of the board to develop and promote private-sector programs and voluntary parental involvement Detailed summary of community initiatives and programs funded in whole, or in part, by the board Availability and cost of quality child care for children under age 5 needing care outside their home. Number, location and status of quality pre-kindergarten programs in the state Percentage of third grade students reading at or above grade level

5

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

INTRODUCTION

6


OPSRBOARD Public Sector Representatives & their Designees State Superintendent of Public Instruction Joy Hofmeister Designee: Tiffany Neill State Commissioner of Health Keith Reed, Interim Commissioner Designees: Joyce Marshall & Beth Martin Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Commissioner Carrie Slatton-Hodges Designee: Audra Haney Oklahoma Department of Commerce Director Brent Kisling Designee: Marshall Vogts Oklahoma Department of Libraries Director Melody Kellogg Designee: Adrienne Butler Department of Human Services Director Justin Brown Designees: Jennifer King & Brittany Lee Oklahoma Health Care Authority Administrator Kevin Corbett Designee: Dr. Nathan Valentine Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth Director Annette Wisk Jacobi

Cabinet Secretary with Responsibility for Education Agencies Ryan Walters Dean of the College of Human Environmental Sciences, Oklahoma State University Dr. Jon Pedersen Designee: Jennifer Stepp State Director of Head Start Collaboration Paula Brown Designee: Karla Benford

Private Sector Representatives Appointed by the Governor Representative of Licensed Child Care Providers Rachel Proper Vice President, Child Care, Inc. Representative of the Licensed Child Care Industry Appointed by the Governor from a List Submitted by an Association Representing the Licensed Child Care Industry Angie Clayton Kids R Us of Tecumseh Two Parents of Children Age 8 or Younger Brett Vanderzee Jennifer Pham Representative of a State Association of Federally Funded Early Childhood Programs Governor Appointees Marianne "Marny" Dunlap, MD Associate Professor of Pediatrics, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center Tina Floyd

State Department of Rehabilitation Services Director Melinda Fruendt Designees: Chris Dvorak & Rita Echelle Oklahoma Educational Television Authority Executive Director Polly Anderson Designee: Curtis Calvin Oklahoma Department of Career and Technology Education Director Marcie Mack Designee: Joann Carter Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education Chancellor Dr. Glen Johnson Designee: Gina McPherson

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Kelly Kay President & CEO, YMCA of Greater Oklahoma City Melissa Larimore Community Programs Director, Youth & Family Services, Inc. Amanda McCabe Adjunct Professor, Oklahoma State University Sarah Roberts Vice President of Programs, Inasmuch Foundation Anthony Stafford Senior Program Director, Sunbeam Family Services Annie Koppel Van Hanken Senior Program Officer, George Kaiser Family Foundation


OPSR FOUNDATION The OPSR Foundation amplifies OPSR's impact in early childhood research, programs and initiatives and allows OPSR to operate as a 501(c)(3). Our Foundation board includes passionate and dedicated advocates, many of whom worked to improve school readiness prior to the formation of OPSR. Our Foundation is proud of how far early childhood systems have come in Oklahoma, but they know there is much more to be gained if Oklahoma continues to invest in children from birth to the time they enter school. We are thankful to all officers who generously share their time serving on the Foundation and its committees and helping to spread OPSR’s mission.

Annie Koppel Van Hanken

Ginny Bass Carl

Marsha Schmidt

Vice President

Treasurer

Pam Gutel Campbell

Lucie Doll

President

Caren Calhoun Director

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Director

Director

Suzanne Thompson Secretary

AJ Griffin Director

INTRODUCTION

8


FISCAL YEAR 2021 PUBLIC SUPPORT Oklahoma Department of Human Services

FOUNDATION SUPPORT Alliance for Early Success George Kaiser Family Foundation Inasmuch Foundation Nemours Children's Health Systems Potts Family Foundation

Inasmuch 3.4%

Alliance Nemours 3.4% 6.6%

GKFF 24.8% DHS 61.4%

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ANNUAL REPORT 2021

INTRODUCTION


OPSR FUNDING & EXPENDITURES

056,824,3$

458,935$

OPSR Foundation

Public Support

4,000,000

3,000,000

2,000,000

1,000,000

0

840,417$

822,927$

2021

008,244$

455,044$

2020

420,382$

2019

948,762$

2018

159,003$

116,815$

2017

625,544$

587,934,1$

2016

174,364$

263,085,1$

2015

530,150,1$

829,455,1$

2014

980,723,1$

514,045,1$

2013

050,027$

208,835,1$

2012

669,007$

551,666,1$

2011

10


OPSRSTAFF Carrie Williams, Executive Director

Carrie Williams joined OPSR as chief operating officer in May 2021 and was subsequently named executive director in September. Her focus is to ensure Oklahoma’s early childhood system remains strong, cohesive and vigilant against pandemic challenges. A native of Marlow, Okla., Williams is a graduate of the University of Central Oklahoma where she studied journalism. Before joining OPSR, she spent seven years as executive director of Rainbow Fleet, a 50-year-old nonprofit that improves access to child development programs and services for central Oklahoma families, children and child care professionals.

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Vicki Bumpas

Kasey Cabello

Mary Griffin

Taylor Knooihuizen

Director of Finance

Director of Communications

Clearinghouse Coach

Program Coordinator

Christopher Lee

Courtney Maker

Business Process Engineer

Administrative Coordinator

Carlye McQuiston

Adelaide Webb

Director of Programs

Director of Research

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

INTRODUCTION


ACHIEVEMENTS & DEVELOPMENT OF VOLUNTARY PARENT INVOLVEMENT

Thirty Oklahoma Libraries Receive Funding Through Public Library Family Engagement Renewal Grant In May 2021, 30 Oklahoma public libraries received a total of $37,500 in Public Library Family Engagement Project renewal grants to expand on projects previously funded through OKFutures, a grant awarded to OPSR by the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services and Education and administered by the Administration for Children and Families. A requirement of the grant is that we maximize parental choice and knowledge by providing parents with information about the variety of early care and education programs for children from birth to kindergarten. Library services for babies and toddlers are crucial and provide families with young children in Oklahoma information to develop language and pre-reading skills. Early brain development research has shown the positive impact that talking, singing and reading to babies and toddlers can have on speech and language acquisition. For children with special needs such as those with disabilities and English language learners, early access to library services is even more important to build a foundation prior to entering elementary school.

I know first-hand the value of parents reading aloud to their children from an early age. It is very gratifying to be able to bring back something to this community and help new parents establish good habits of reading aloud to their little ones. Our hope is that the families will develop the habit of reading aloud at home and will continue by use the public library. Jan Cole, Duncan Public Library Director

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

ACHIEVEMENTS

12


OPSR Helps Fund Infant and Toddler Kits for Home Child Care Providers to Encourage Social Emotional Development and Early Literacy The Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness Foundation was pleased to approve a $120,000 grant to Oklahoma Child Care Resource and Referral Association (OCCRRA). This funding provided 1,348 infant and toddler kits for licensed family child care home providers in Oklahoma. The kits included books, toys and resource materials to encourage social emotional development and early literacy, two key predictors of school readiness for children. Strengthening relationships between agencies and with Oklahoma's child care partners is an important focus of our work at OPSR, and this grant enabled OCCRRA's child care consultants and coaches to offer support to an often-isolated community. Both OCCRRA and OPSR wanted to recognize the hard work of child care workers and express their appreciation for their support of young children. Providers were given the option to select the kit that best met the needs of the children they serve.

"The toy donation we received was a true blessing," said Nickia LaSha, founder of Greene's Family Daycare, a 3-star nationally accredited family child care home in Tulsa. "Our kids were so excited to unbox the toys and learn about them. Being able to touch and feel the different textures of the toys and hear new sounds made them all smile. Your donation was a great addition to our toy bin and we’re helpful in our lesson on learning about our different senses." 13

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

ACHIEVEMENTS


$50,000 Awarded to Help Pediatric Care with Early Literacy and Wellness Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness awarded $50,000 to Reach Out and Read Oklahoma. This grant enabled the purchase of books and stickers for distribution to families and children through hospitals, clinics and doctors’ offices. Established in 1989, Reach Out and Read is a national organization with several state chapters that share a vision of every child being read to every day. The organization partners with pediatric teams to provide families and children with the knowledge and tools they need to make reading a part of their daily routine. The pediatric partners talk with families about the benefits of reading aloud, show them how to look at books and talk about stories, encourage them to read together at home and give the child a new book to take home and keep. Additionally, health care providers use the book for development surveillance.

"Relationships are really what drive the healthy development of children," said Marny Dunlap, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine. "With Reach Out and Read giving parents the skills and tools to create those little moments with their children through reading, they are creating positive childhood experiences that protect and mitigate against the effect of adverse childhood experiences."

Stickers were also purchased for providers to add to the backs of books to remind parents of children age six months to 4 years of their next well-child visit. Reach Out and Read’s program has produced a multitude of school-readiness benefits for Oklahoma children, including the development of healthy relationships, positive childhood experiences, early literacy skills, language and social emotional skills. It has also enhanced families' experiences in health care, increasing well-child visit compliance.

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

ACHIEVEMENTS

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FRAMEWORK FOR OKLAHOMA SCHOOL READINESS

The OPSR framework includes skills and system components that must be in place to ensure children are prepared and successful in kindergarten and beyond. This framework differs from the pathway because it provides a broader context of how a community can support specific skills to prepare children for school. Families, communities and schools each have responsibilities in providing opportunities for children to be prepared upon school entry.

List down Ready objectives Childrenfor the quarter

Physical Wellbeing

Prepared Schools

Cognition & General Knowledge

Social & Emotional Development

School Readiness

Supportive Communities

Approaches to Learning

Language Development

Quality Early Care & Learning

Strong Families

SWOT Analysis

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ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


KINDERGARTEN READINESS For Oklahoma children to be prepared to enter kindergarten, it is imperative they have access to health services, high-quality early care and learning opportunities and that their parents and families are supported. The Oklahoma School Readiness Pathway serves as our roadmap to identify, monitor and report how Oklahoma is - or isn’t - meeting school readiness benchmarks. It was developed to depict the complexities of the interlocking systems that comprise school readiness with OPSR’s goal that Oklahoma’s early childhood system be coordinated, aligned and adequately funded. The Pathway illustrates how health, early care and learning, and family support influence a child’s readiness for school.

Page

19

Page

23

Page

30

Children & Families Have Access to Health Services

Children Engaged in High Quality Early Care & Learning All Parents Have Access to Education & Support Services

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

16


THE PATHWAY Our pathway to kindergarten focuses on three major areas – Health, Early Care & Learning and Family Support.

Children & Families Have Access to Health Services Research shows that healthy children are better able to engage in experiences crucial to the learning process. Fundamental needs are: Babies are born on time & healthy. Children have access to health care. Children are physically & emotionally healthy. Children are on a positive development trajectory.

Children Engaged in High-Quality Early Care & Learning Children in high-quality early care and learning are more likely to succeed in school and throughout their lifetime. Objectives here are: Children have access to high-quality, developmentally appropriate programs with professionals. Children attend early learning programs & schools consistently. Children learn in safe environments with positive climates that support social-emotional development.

All Parents Have Access to Education & Support Services Educated, skilled and supported family members and caregivers are better equipped to expose children to educational opportunities. This means: Children have safe, stable & nurturing relationships with their caregivers. Families have the knowledge, skills & social supports for their children's optimal development. Children live in economically secure families. Communities are safe, toxic-free and economically viable in support of children & their families. 17


Beginning at birth through school entry, this framework allows us to monitor outcomes and indicators that inform action such as policy changes and investments in quality improvement.

1 2 3 4 5

BIRTH

Babies must be born on time and healthy.

AGE 2

Toddlers must be on a positive development trajectory.

AGE 3

3-year-olds must be safe, secure and healthy.

AGE 4

4-year-olds must be on a path to school readiness.

AGE 5

5-year-olds are ready for school.

18


Children & Families Have Access to Health Services Health and development begins at birth, which is why a child’s earliest years are so important. Children who are born healthy and on time have mothers who received prenatal care, including adequate nutrition and monitoring for health risks. To stay on track developmentally, a child and their family must continue to have access to health services during that child’s earliest years.

01

Babies are born on time & healthy.

02

Children have access to health care.

03

Children are physically & emotionally healthy.

04

Children are on a positive developmental trajectory.

Babies Are Born on Time and Healthy Good physical and mental health provide a strong foundation for Oklahoma’s children to develop physically, cognitively, emotionally and socially. A child’s health and development begin before birth, which is why ensuring mothers have access to prenatal care is critical.

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ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Oklahoma Infant Mortality Rates by Race and Location 01

National Average

White (OK)

Black (OK)

Hispanic (OK)

American Indian/Alaska Native (OK) 0%

5%

10%

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

15%


Compared to the national average, Oklahoma performs better by a very small margin on only one indicator: the percentage of babies born at low birth weight. The state is performing worse than national averages on indicators such as the infant mortality rate and the percentage of women who reported smoking during pregnancy.

Oklahoma Preterm Birth Rates by Race and Location 01 National Average White (OK) Black (OK) Hispanic (OK) Rural Urban 0%

5%

10%

15%

20%

Oklahoma Low Birth Weight Rates by Race and Location 01

National Average White (OK) Black (OK) Hispanic (OK) Rural Urban

0%

5%

10%

15%

20%

Oklahoma Women Who Reported Smoking During Pregnancy 02

Nearly one out of every 10 women reported smoking during pregnancy in 2020. Tobacco use during pregnancy is linked to numerous health outcomes that could affect baby for the rest of their life.

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

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Children Have Access to Health Care When it comes to health care coverage, Oklahoma is ranked 49th in percentage of the population not covered by private or public health insurance with 14.2% of Oklahomans 02 being uninsured, including 6.4% of our low-income infants and toddlers. 01 Uninsured families and Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) providers as families both experience difficulty accessing essential health services. To stay on track developmentally, health services are critical to children and families during the early years. Favorably, Oklahoma children are above the national average when it comes to receiving an annual well-child visit. However, our numbers fall below the national average for children ages 6 to 17.

14.2% of Oklahomans are uninsured, including 6.4% of low-income infants and toddlers.

87.7% of children birth to age 5 received preventive care in 2020.

Percentage of Children 01 Receiving Preventive Care 100%

75%

50%

25%

0%

21

Oklahoma Average

Oklahoma Oklahoma Above Low-Income Low-Income Average Average

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

National Average

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


Children are Physically and Emotionally Healthy Percentage of Children from birth to age 5 in Excellent or 03 Very Good Health 2019-20 100% 94.2%

92%

75% 50% 25% 0%

National Average Oklahoma Average

Percentage of Children from six months to age 5 Exhibiting SelfRegulation, Good Interpersonal Skills and No Behavior Problems 2019-20 03 100% 75%

83.1%

91.9%

50% 25% 0%

National Average

Children are on a Positive Development Trajectory Research shows that 90% of brain development occurs from birth to age 5. During this period rapid of growth, access to regular developmental screenings and early interventions is essential to address potential developmental delays.

32.8%

01

of Oklahoma children received a developmental screening in 2020 National Average: 32.5%

SoonerStart is an Oklahoma federal grant program (Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, Part C) that provides statewide intervention services for families and children from birth to age 2 with developmental delays. Research shows that children who receive periodic developmental screenings and early interventions for developmental delays may be more likely to enter school ready to learn. Of Oklahoma infants and toddlers, 3.6% are receiving IDEA Part C services compared to 6.8% nationally.01 Factors that may contribute to this lower rate include fewer infants and toddlers are enrolled in early care and education services where delays might be identified, a lack of information on identification of developmental delays provided to parents and early childhood providers, and Oklahoma’s more restrictive eligibility criteria resulting in children with milder delays not receiving services. In order to be in compliance with IDEA Part C, each infant and toddler in the program needs an Individual Family Service Plan (IFSP). It is critical that each infant and toddler receives the early intervention services on their IFSPs in a timely manner. According to the Oklahoma State Department of Education, 99.07% of infants and toddlers with IFSPs received the early intervention 04 services in a timely manner in federal fiscal year 2019.

Oklahoma Average

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

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Children Engaged in High Quality Early Care & Learning Oklahoma Children Under Age 5

Total: 302,79205 187,600

%26

High-quality programs have strong, exceptional teachers that use effective, developmentallyappropriate curriculum to form a solid learning foundation. In addition, high-quality early care and learning requires supportive learning environments with an adequate number of teachers and leaders that tailor learning experiences to a child’s individual cultural needs.

children with working parents

Eastern Region

01

109,740

Children have access to high quality, developmentally appropriate programs with professionals.

02

Children attend early learning programs & schools consistently.

03

Children learn in safe environments with positive climates that support socialemotional development.

Tulsa Region

Southern Region

Western Region

OKC Region 0

25,000

50,000

75,000

100,000 125,000

Oklahoma Children Under Age 5: - Two Working Parents - Single Working Parent Refer to page 22 for regions

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ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


Nontraditional Schedules Sought 2020 05 05

0%

Weekends

Evenings

25%

50%

Overnight Afterschool

Ages for Whom Care is Sought 2020 05 0%

Infants

25%

Toddlers

Age 2

Before School

Ages 3 to 5

75%

24-Hour

50%

School Age

100%

75%

Amount of Care Sought 2020 05 0%

Part Time

25%

Full Time

50%

75%

100%

Availability and Cost of Quality Child Care Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) is a global term that refers to the development of social, emotional, cognitive and physical needs of children from birth to age eight. Oklahoma uses an ECCE mixed delivery system or a system of early childhood care and education services delivered through a combination of programs, providers, and settings, such as Head Start, licensed family and center-based child care programs, public schools, and other communitybased organizations supported by public and private funds.

Oklahoma's ECCE mixed delivery system includes three main programs to help prepare young children for school:

1

Licensed Child Care

2

Universal Pre-Kindergarten

3

Head Start/Early Head Start (including Tribal)

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

24


Licensed Child Care

2,389

Oklahoma licensed child care facilities 05

Oklahoma Children Population Under Age 5 05 Eastern Region Tulsa Region Southern Region

(46% two- and three-star facilities)

OKC Region

0

0 0 ,5 21

0

00 1

00 ,

,5 7

00 0

0 05

00 ,

2

,5

00 0

0

88,918

licensed child care slots available 05

Western Region

Licensed Child Care Star Ratings in Oklahoma05 Eastern Region Tulsa Region Southern Region Western Region OKC Region 0

250

500

750

1,000

One Star | One+ Star | Two Stars | Three Stars

192,760 Oklahoma children under age 5 with all working parents compared to child care slots available

Regions Tulsa

Western

OKC Eastern

55% 25

Southern

Percent of Oklahoma population that lives in a child care desert 08

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


$15,181

Average annual child care tuition for two children17

College

26% Percent of median income the average family 08 spends on child care for two children

11.7% 39.6%

Annual Costs in Oklahoma 17

Cost of care, as % of income married families 01 Cost of care, as % of income single parents 01

Average Weekly Costs of Child Care In Oklahoma by Age in 2020 05

Center

$150.39 $140

Housing

4-year-old Care

Infant Care $0

$2,500

$5,000

$7,500

$10,000

Home Infant

Age 1

$121.20 $118.55

Positive Early Learning Experiences Policy in Oklahoma01 Infant eligibility level for child care subsidy above 200% of FPL Allocated CCDBG funds

$132.06

$126.96

Age 2

Age 3

$115.79

$114.59

Group size requirements meet or exceed EHS standards

1 of 3 age groups

Adult/child ratio requirements meet or exceed EHS standards

1 of 3 age groups

Level of teacher qualification required by the state

No credential beyond a high school diploma

Infant/toddler credential adopted

$118.66

$104.23

Ages 4 to 5 School Age

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

$113.14

$105.70

State reimburses center based child care at/above 75th percentile of market rates State includes "at-risk" children as eligible for IDEA Part C services or reports that they serve “at-risk” children

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

26


Universal Pre-Kindergarten

#5 Ranked

in the U.S. for preschool access 06

70%

of Oklahoma's four-year-olds attend pre-kindergarten06

Oklahoma School Districts

100%

offer state-funded pre-kindergarten programs.06

National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) annually produces a Quality Standards Checklist that features 10 researchedbased standards essential to a state's pre-kindergarten policy. These 10 benchmarks set the groundwork for high-quality experiences for children and are considered necessary to ensure the effectiveness of preschool education programs, especially when serving children who are at-risk for school failure. Here are key takeaways from this year's report: 06 Oklahoma fell from number three to number five in the U.S. for pre-kindergarten access. Only 5% of Oklahoma 3-year-olds are enrolled in prekindergarten. Currently, funding for 3-year-olds is provided by the Oklahoma Early Childhood Program (OECP) through a passthrough from the state to public school districts. Oklahoma preschool enrolled 42,683 preschoolers in 2019-20, an increase of 77 from the prior year. Oklahoma was one of 12 state-funded preschool programs that meet all four benchmarks that focus on process quality (Early Learning and Development Standards-ELDS, Curriculum Supports, Professional Development, and CQIS). Oklahoma was one of only 13 states that met at least nine of the Quality Standard benchmarks. State funding totaled $196,744,743, up 7% (adjusted for inflation) since last year. State spending per child equaled $4,609 in 2019-20, up $283 (adjusted for inflation) from 2018-19.

27

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

24


NIEER's Quality Standards Checklist Which benchmarks does Oklahoma meet? 06

POLICY

OK PRE-K REQUIREMENT

BENCHMARK

Early learning & developmental standards

Comprehensive, aligned, supported, culturally sensitive

Comprehensive, aligned, supported, culturally sensitive

Curriculum supports

Approval process & supports

Approval process & supports

Teacher degree

Bachelor of Arts

Bachelor of Arts

Teacher specialized training

Early childhood education

Specializing in pre-K

Assistant teacher degree

High school diploma

CDA or equivalent

Staff professional development

15 hours/year, PD plans; coaching

For teachers & assistants: At least 15 hours/year; individual PD plans; coaching

Maximum class size

18 (3-year-olds) 20 (4-year-olds)

20 or lower

Staff-child ratio

1:9 (3-year-olds) 1:10 (4-year-olds)

1:10 or better

Screening & referral

Vision, hearing, immunizations

Vision, hearing & health screenings; & referral

Continuous quality improvement system

Structured classroom observations; Data used for program improvement

Structured classroom observations; Data used for program improvement

Standards Met = ANNUAL REPORT 2021

9

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

28


Head Start/Early Head Start Oklahoma Head Start/Early Head Start (HS/EHS ) is a federal program that promotes school readiness of children from birth to age 5 from low-income families by enhancing their cognitive, social and emotional development. Children from low-income families, as well as children in foster care, experiencing homelessness or from families receiving public assistance are also eligible for Head Start/Early Head Start services. These programs encourage parent involvement through regular visits to the child’s home and volunteer opportunities.

Head Start

serves families with children between ages 3 and 5.

Early Head Start

serves pregnant women and families with children under age 3.

Number of Head Start/Early Head Start Programs

Total Number of Children P R IServed CE

19 Programs Funded Under Region IV/Dallas

28,015 Enrolled in Early Head Start and Head Start Programs

07

14 Tribal Programs Funded Under Region XI/ Washington, D.C. 19 Head Start Programs Funded in Region VI 25 Early Head Start Programs Funded in Region VI 12 Tribal Head Start Programs Funded 6 Tribal Early Head Start Programs Funded

29

4,079 Children and 134 Pregnant Women Enrolled in all Early Head Start Programs

Families and Children Experiencing Homelessness

Children in Foster Care

Children with Disabilities

883 Children Served

795 Children Served

1,372 Children in Head Start Identified by a Local Education Agency as Eligible to Receive Special Education Services

809 Families Served 214 Families Acquired Housing

Only 7 Did Not Receive Services 313 Children in Early Head Start Identified by a SoonerStart as Eligible for Part C Services Only 5 Did Not Receive Services


All Parents Have Access to Education & Support Services Educated, skilled and supported family members and caregivers are better equipped to expose children to educational opportunities.

01

Children have safe, stable and nurturing relationships with their caregivers.

02

Families have the knowledge, skills and social supports for their children’s optimal development.

03

Children live in economically secure families.

04

Communities are safe, toxicfree and economically viable in support of children and their families.

Welfare

secivreS troppuS ylimaF

Without support, vulnerable families struggle to fulfill their child’s health and developmental needs, putting their path to school readiness in jeopardy. For example, families living in high poverty or crime-heavy areas may be less likely to use community resources that could enrich their child’s learning. Conversely, families that receive support are more engaged in their child’s development.

Education & Welfare Training

Transportation

Parenting

Income and Nutritional Support Paid Leave Policies Transportation 30


Safe, Stable, Nurturing Relationships with Caregivers A young child's environment and relationships affect virtually every area of development. This is why stability, safety and supportive relationships are key to nurturing their growth and ensuring they’re prepared for school. Families eating meals together gives young children the opportunity to learn more words and practice communicating with others. Many studies have also shown a link between eating family meals, better grades and school achievement as well as a lowered chance of risky behaviors. Talking, reading and singing with a child every day beginning at birth not only increases the child’s language, reading, thinking and social skills, but also creates a stronger emotional bond between the caretaker and the child.

Percent of Oklahomans with Children Birth to Age Five 03 Who Eat Weekly Meals Together

0 Days

1-3 Days

4-6 Days

Every Day 0

20

National Average

31

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

60

Oklahoma Average

Percent of Oklahoma Parents Who Read to Baby Every Day 01 38.8%

40

Percent of Oklahoma Parents Who Sing to Baby Every Day 01 53.8%

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


Safe, Stable, Nurturing Relationships with Caregivers The most common type of neglect is threat of harm, which is when a child faces a direct threat from their environment. Indicators include: drug use is present in the home a child is exposed to domestic violence failure to protect a child. Some have speculated that the opioid epidemic and rising popularity of drugs like methamphetamine have also contributed to the rising numbers of neglect. Research has increasingly recognized the consequences of various types of trauma known as Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs). Oklahoma is the only state that falls in the highest prevalence quartile for eight of the most commonly assessed ACEs. The prevalence of ACEs in Oklahoma is concerning given that research has linked ACEs to a variety of outcomes, including higher likelihood of risky health behaviors, chronic health conditions, incarceration and lower educational attainment and earnings. Adults’ ACEs can also affect children’s development. One study found that for each parental ACE identified, a child’s suspected risk of developmental delay increased by 18%.

Percent of Oklahomans Experiencing One Adverse Childhood Experience in 202001 30%

27.7% 20%

20.7%

10%

0%

National Average

Oklahoma Average

Percent of Oklahomans Experiencing Two or More Adverse Childhood Experiences in 2020 01

20%

Oklahoma Infant/Toddler 01 Maltreatment Rate 31.7%

16.4%

17.6%

15%

10%

5%

7.7%

National Average

0%

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

National Average

Oklahoma Average

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

32


All families benefit from parenting supports, and many require access to additional resources to help meet their child’s daily and developmental needs. Nearly 85% of Oklahoma parents of children birth to age 5 reported that, during the past 12 months, there was someone they could turn to for day-to-day emotional support with parenting or raising children. 03 This type of support is critical for parents of young children, particularly as a method for mitigating postpartum depression in mothers. More Oklahoma mothers reported less than optimal mental health (27%) than the national average (20.3%).01 Poor maternal mental health can hinder a child’s growth and their development may be negatively impacted as well. Even very young infants are sensitive to the environment and quality of care that

surrounds them. Prolonged or severe mental illness can affect mother-infant attachment, breastfeeding and infant care. Oklahoma Home Visiting Report In fiscal year 2019, 2,865 families and 2,494 children were served by home-based family support programs.09 These programs are free and target low-income families, parents with low-educational attainment, single parents or parents under age 25. These risk factors are associated with increased incidents of child maltreatment, poorer health and decreased school readiness. Home visitors assess family information to tailor services, provide direct education and support, make referrals and coordinate services.

09

30,564

2,882

Home Visits Completed

2,523 Children Served

33

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Families Served

57

Counties Served

26

Programs

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


Families Have Knowledge, Skills and Social Support for Their Children’s Optimal Development

Percent of Oklahoma Children Under Age 5 Living Below the Federal Poverty Level 03 25%

23.4%

20%

19.6%

Parental educational attainment is an important predictor of a child’s educational and behavioral outcomes. One study concluded that maternal education was significantly linked to children’s intellectual outcomes, even after controlling for a number of socioeconomic factors, such as household income.10 In Oklahoma, 4.3% of families with children under age 5 have high school as their highest level of education.03

15%

10%

5%

0%

Having access to internet is a basic human right according to the United Nations, and is especially crucial amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

National Average

Oklahoma Average

91.9%

percentage of Oklahoma’s households with children that have high-speed internet.02

Oklahoma currently ranks 26th in access to the internet.11 While most residents living in the state’s two metro areas reported having access to internet, thousands of others in rural areas reported not having any internet connection at all. Only 68.9% of Oklahoma’s population has access to high-speed coverage. 11

4.3%

of Oklahoma parents with children under age 5 list high school as their highest level of education.03

Children Live in Economically Secure Families Oklahoma children from birth to age 5 are slightly more likely to be living in poverty than the national average with 25.8% living below the federal poverty level.03 Families with lower incomes struggle to consistently meet the basic needs of their children and living in poverty can affect a child’s ability to succeed in school and future potential earnings. Exposure to chronic stress, such as low access to food, health care and stable housing, can impair a child’s development and can have negative implications on a child’s health in the future.

31

34


Children Live in Economically Secure Families Families, neighborhoods and communities are all affected when violent crime occurs. Not only do violent crimes cause physical harm, but in neighborhoods where it is prevalent, it can lead to less physical activity. Violent crimes disproportionately affect low-income and minority communities.

432

Number of murders, rapes, robberies and aggravated assaults in Oklahoma per 100,000 population. National Average: 379 02

Oklahomans Who Experience Intimate Partner Physical Violence Intimate Partner Rape and/or Intimate Partner Stalking in their Lifetimes 16

40.1%

Women

37.8%

Men

Research indicates that children can be harmed simply by witnessing the occurrence of home violence. Children who witness domestic violence can suffer severe emotional and developmental challenges similar to abuse victims. 14

Strong Families Policy in Oklahoma 01 Paid Family Leave Paid Sick Time that Covers Care for Child 9.7% of Oklahoma parents of children under age five did not think their children lived in a safe neighborhood, nearly double the national average of 5.2%.03

35

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

TANF Work Exemption State Child Tax Credit State Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC)

KINDERGARTEN READINESS


Food Insecurity

14.7% of Oklahoma households experience food insecurity. 02

14.7%

Oklahoma Households

85%

of U.S. counties with high child food insecurity are rural.12

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Food insecurity refers to the inability for households to provide adequate food for one or more household member due to lack of resources. It differs from hunger in that hunger is a physiological feeling. Food insecurity is a complex problem and does not exist in isolation for low-income families. Many of the same families also struggle with issues like affordable housing, medical costs and low wages. The pandemic also heightened food insecurity. Children are more vulnerable to the negative impacts of food insecurity because their brains and bodies are still developing. Among children, food insecurity is associated with anemia, asthma, depression and anxiety, cognitive and behavioral problems, and a higher risk of being hospitalized. There are several programs that aim to combat the negative

effects of child poverty and food insecurity. The Women, Infants and Children Program (WIC) provides food and nutritional support specifically for pregnant and postpartum women and children.

54.8%

of Oklahoma children ages 1 to 4 are eligible 02 for WIC.

Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) helped 3.4 million people in the U.S. out of poverty in 2017. 02 However, 1 in 4 individuals who are food insecure may not qualify for federal food assistance.12

of Oklahomans 14% can access SNAP.

13

71%

of SNAP participants are in families with children.13

KINDERGARTEN READINESS

36


THIRD- AND FOURTH-GRADE READING LEVELS Third grade reading proficiency represents the percentage of students scoring at or above the proficient level on the Oklahoma third grade reading test. In the 2016-17 academic year, Oklahoma transitioned from the Oklahoma Core Curriculum Test to the Oklahoma State Testing Program (OSTP), a criterion-referenced test designed to indicate whether students have achieved the competencies defined by the Oklahoma Academic Standards. Each student's performance is compared to a preset standard of expected achievement by subject at each grade level. The State Board of Education establishes the level of academic rigor that students must meet, and in the 2016-17 academic year, they approved more rigorous standards. In 2011, Oklahoma amended the Reading Sufficiency Act (RSA) to require schools to retain students who do not pass a reading test and do not meet other criteria for exemptions by the end of the third grade. The purpose of the RSA is to ensure all Oklahoma students are reading on grade level at the end of the third grade, a critical juncture when students go from learning to read to reading to learn. The RSA supports Oklahoma children in kindergarten through third grade.

37

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

READING LEVELS


THIRD GRADE 15

FOURTH GRADE 15

49,901 Students Enrolled Statewide

49,588 Students Enrolled Statewide

44% of third grade students read below a third grade reading level.

45% of fourth-grade students read below a fourth-grade reading level.

Advanced

Advanced

Proficient

Proficient

Basic

Basic

Below Basic

Below Basic 0

10

20

2018/19

30

40

50

0

Third Grade Students by Group Reading Below a Third-Grade Reading Level 15

White

34%

Other

43%

70%

46%

39% 36%

65%

58% 43%

Students with Disabilities Economically Disadvantaged

54%

50

69%

Hispanic

58%

40

2020/21

Black

Asian

38%

30

Fourth-Grade Students by Group Reading Below a Fourth-Grade Reading Level 15

American Indian

44%

20

2018/19

2020/21

67%

10

English Learners

75% 56%

68%

38


PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS Oklahoma’s top early childhood advocacy group and the state’s only early childhood research institute partnered to offer a new, multi-session conference to highlight early childhood research, initiatives and policy. “Building Equitable Futures for Oklahoma’s Children: An Early Childhood Research and Policy Series,” was presented by Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness (OPSR) and the Early Childhood Education Institute (ECEI), on Dec. 9, Jan. 13 and Feb. 10 of 2021. Each of the free, online webinars averaged more than 200 registrants and featured multiple keynote speakers and introductory remarks from state leaders including State Superintendent Joy Hofmeister. “Our goal is that these lectures will inform early childhood administrators, leaders, researchers, decision-makers and funders about current early childhood research conducted in Oklahoma with a focus on pre-K studies, the state’s early childhood initiatives and ancillary services and supports for the early childhood workforce,” said Diane Horm, ECEI director.

OPSR PROJECTS Page

Early Childhood Integrated Data Systems

Page

Project HOPE

Page

Oklahoma Standard

Page

Alliance for Early Success

40

41

43 45

39

Page

47

Early Childhood Care & Education Access

Page

ECE Federal Relief Funds

Page

Pyramid Model

48 49


EARLY CHILDHOOD INTEGRATED DATA SYSTEM ECIDS creates secure, linked data across various early childhood programs to inform what's going on in Oklahoma’s early childhood system. In partnership with the Oklahoma Health and Human Services Cabinet and the Oklahoma State Department of Education, OPSR led efforts to design and implement ECIDS. In fiscal year 2019, OPSR received the Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five, known as OKFutures, from the U.S. Departments of Health and Human Services and Education (administered by the Administration for Children and Families) and have continued efforts to align Oklahoma's early childhood programs.

To maximize this opportunity, OPSR worked with Third Sector Intelligence to build upon Oklahoma's early steps on ECIDS. By looking at the OKFutures Needs Assessment, ECIDS can help increase alignment and quality in order to better meet existing needs of Oklahoma's most vulnerable and underserved families through the following steps: Implement a data governance framework to establish interagency leadership for a governance structure, integrate agency expertise to facilitate policy development, and centralize administrative capacity and technical infrastructure. Establish an interagency board that oversees partner composition, roles and responsibilities, issue resolution, and security protocols that protect personal information.

Use ECIDS to conduct data analyses across the integrated mixed-delivery system on program and service availability, quality, and cost by age. Display and distribute standard reports (e.g., trends on unduplicated counts of young children being served across programs and the number of children awaiting services) or custom reports, as requested, to inform and engage policymakers, funders, communities, and families.

Work to further support the development of the Early Childhood Integrated Data System is ongoing, as the COVID-19 pandemic further exacerbated the need to coordination of services to children and families. OPSR is coordinating with partners across the state in support of ECIDS.

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS

40


PROJECTHOPE With Project HOPE, OPSR hopes to increase local capacity for young children to thrive. Funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, OPSR has worked closely with Nemours Children’s Health System (Nemours) and partnered with other states and local organizations to create a long-term plan that ensures Oklahoma children birth to age 5 have equitable access to health services and healthy development opportunities. To achieve this, we narrowed our focus to look at infant mortality, which stands out in our state for its high numbers and racial disparities.

Community Engagement Activities Since 2019, OPSR has led several activities to increase the capacity of parents and stakeholders to establish feedback loops and incorporate community voice in local/state initiatives.

Recognizing Disparities Black women are three to four times more likely to die during pregnancy and childbirth than white women.

Community Action Lab Community stakeholders, including parents and child care providers, were convened by Boston Medical Center's Vital Village, Community Action Agency (Oak Grove) and OPSR to determine the priority areas that children and families in Oak Grove need to thrive, including: Quality activities that lead to high quality education Technical assistance for community development

41

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Equity and Diversity Training The E-LEaD team and community stakeholders participated in an Equity Workshop, led by the Institute for Public Health Innovation, which aimed to increase stakeholders' capacity to improve policies and reduce inequities in early childhood.

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS


SenseMaker Framework "Hopeful Futures" To ensure that community voice informs the work of Project HOPE, OPSR partnered with the University of Kansas to use a story-gathering tool to allow community members to gather stories directly from parents and community providers. This customized version of the Sensemaker Framework is known as "Hopeful Futures." This ability to share lived experience with a more trusted surveyor strengthens the feedback loop, allowing trained community members to collect qualitative data around basic needs, equity and access to vital services for those in Oklahoma.

Nearly 400 stories about pregnancy, birth or the first year of a child’s life have now been collected across Oklahoma through Hopeful Futures. Six organizations partnered with OPSR to collect Hopeful Futures stories: 1. Northern Oklahoma Youth Services 2. Community Service Council 3. Community Development Support Association 4. Latino Community Development Agency 5. Lilyfield 6. Kids’ Space, Muskogee County Child Advocacy Center

1

3 4

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

5

2 6

Complimentary Initiatives In addition to Project HOPE, state partners are engaged in several other initiatives focused on improving the health and wellbeing of young children. Oklahoma Preschool Development Grant (OKFutures) OKFutures Birth Through Five Preschool Development Grant is designed to improve Oklahoma's early childhood mixed delivery system by illuminating and addressing unmet needs, especially for vulnerable and underserved children and families. Alliance for Early Success With a grant from the Alliance for Early Success, OPSR is working to coordinate an early childhood system focused on strengthening families and school readiness for all children. Oklahoma Standard When COVID-19 hit, OPSR saw an opportunity to build on the Hopeful Futures SenseMaker framework to understand how Oklahomans are responding to the crisis.

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS

42


OKLAHOMA STANDARD When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, OPSR saw a need to build on the Hopeful Futures SenseMaker framework to understand how Oklahomans are responding to the crisis. This project, called the Oklahoma Standard, aims to shine a light on the unknown by letting the voices of families, practitioners and communities be heard. Information gathered from these stories will be shared with decision-makers to help meet basic needs, build upon successes and act on surprising trends before they become widespread problems. OPSR released an application for community organizations across the state to collect stories in May 2020. By the end of state fiscal year 2020, 28 organizations applied to assist in story collection, and story collection began the first month of fiscal year 2021.

Who Told Us Their Story? 374 people from 34 counties across Oklahoma Multiracial 4.5% America Indian 6.1%

Missing 6.7%

Asian 2.9%

65+ 5.1%

Male 14.4%

Missing 7.8%

Missing 9.9% Hispanic or Latino 13.1%

30-44 36.1%

Black 10.7%

18-29 20.9% White 61.1%

Missing 11.2%

Female 77.3%

13-17 1.1%

Non Hispanic or Latino 77% 45-65 29.1%

Family Income of Respondents Less than $10,000 $10,000-$14,499 $15,000 - $19,999 $20,000 - $24,999 $25,000 - $29,999 $30,000 - $34,999 $35,000 - $39,999 $40,000 - $44,999 $45,000 - $49,999 $50,000 - $59,999 $60,000 + Missing 0%

43

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

10%

20%

30%

40%

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS


What Were Their Stories About? Participants were given two prompts 54.5% of Respondents Chose:

44.9% of Respondents Chose:

Think about something that happened within the last week that helped or hurt you, your family or a family you know.

Remember a time when you felt like your family or another family you know was thriving or just surviving. Share an experience describing what was happening at that time in the family.

PARTICIPANT RESPONSES

Feeling scared/ helpless/stressed about COVID-19

Feeling isolated due to COVID-19

Personally having COVID-19

Having a family/friend/ coworker with COVID-19

Experiecing a death during the pandemic

Homelessness

Provider perspective

Being concerned about receiving healthcare during the pandemic

Experiencing unemployment/loss of income due to the pandemic

Child care

Receiving help or assistance during the pandemic

Adjusting to a new normal

Needing additional support/assistance during the pandemic

Having school-age kids

Finding bright spots during the pandemic

Race/Equity

Relapsing during the pandemic

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS

44


ALLIANCE FOR EARLY SUCCESS OPSR works with the Alliance for Early Success, a national nonprofit, to ensure that every child, birth through age 8, has an equal opportunity to learn, grow, and succeed.

Goals of our Partnership with the Alliance: Ensure revisions to the quality rating and improvement system (QRIS) support socioemotional competencies and reduce racial and economic disparities in discipline practices and access to quality. OPSR has supported the coordination and implementation of the Pyramid Model in Oklahoma since January 2020. The Pyramid Model is evidence based and aims to reduce racial and economic disparities in access for parents, reduce punitive actions, reduce suspension and expulsion practices, and enhance quality in child care settings. Learn more on page 41. OPSR is also partnering with the Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth (OCCY) as they have started a Parent Partnership Board. OPSR and OCCY will lift up parent voice and take suggestions to OPSR’s board, the Early Childhood State Advisory Council, to ensure that this voice is involved in state level recommendations.

45

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Implement a unifying framework for early childhood educators to professionalize the workforce across and within all sectors that educate and care for young children. Since November 2020, OPSR has worked to convene monthly Professional Development and Compensation Parity stakeholder groups to build a unified professional development work plan in Oklahoma. These groups compiled a list of nine priority recommendations that incentivize workforce recruitment & advancement opportunities to produce a workforce with diverse competencies that supports children’s positive development. The group will prioritize three to five of the recommendations to bring stakeholders to the table and secure a plan of action for implementation.

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS


Increase access to early care and learning programs for 3- and 4-year-olds by defining standards and establishing policies that allow layering of funding between Head Start, pre-kindergarten and child care programs. In January 2021, OPSR and NCSL, in partnership with the Potts Family Foundation, convened a meeting with Oklahoma’s Early Childhood Legislative Caucus to begin building a foundation for improved coordination and maximization of funds to increase access to quality ECCE opportunities. Additionally, OPSR finalized a formal partnership with OKDHS to implement the Oklahoma Clearinghouse for Early Childhood Success. The Clearinghouse promotes wellbeing for Oklahoma children and their families by building an evolving definition of quality, fast-tracking innovation, implementing research-informed practice and practice-informed research to support and improve early childhood systems and maximizing public/private partnerships.

OKClearinghouse.org

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

Organize and support a grassroots advocacy network to support policies and practices to increase access to high quality early care and education services, stabilize the child care industry and engage voices of those with lived experiences into shaping a more equitable and responsive early childhood system. OPSR collaborated with nine communitybased organizations to engage in a grassroots advocacy community of practice. This community of practice met monthly Dec. 2020 through May 2021. OPSR partnered with Advocacy & Communication Solutions, LLC (ACS) to host the orientation and cover the importance of advocacy, the difference between advocacy and lobbying, and to learn how to be an effective advocate. The advocacy community of practice selected a policy priority of creating a reimbursement grant program for centers and family child care providers to cover COVID-19 related costs, including up to 80 hours of “hero pay” to licensed ECCE program staff that have had to quarantine or lose paid hours due to facility closures.

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS

46


EARLY CHILDHOOD CARE & EDUCATION ACCESS In response to COVID-19, OPSR and more than 40 early childhood stakeholders worked together to develop seven recommendations to ensure equitable access to early childhood care and education for Oklahoma children.

These seven recommendations address:

1. How early care and education programs can safely care for children. 2. How to equip parents to make informed choices on selecting early care and education programs. 3. How to leverage financial supports and relief packages to maintain Oklahoma’s early childhood infrastructure throughout the pandemic.

OPSR Recommendations 1. Collect real-time data on early childhood care and education program supply and demand. 2. Coordinate and widely disseminate protocols and resources for all early care and education providers serving children birth to age 5 to operate safely under COVID-19 group education and care guidelines. 3. Stabilize the child care industry through the distribution of emergency relief grants and responsive subsidy policies and extend direct support to families who need access to early childhood care and education. 4. Use a cross-sector communications team to disseminate information for parents on health and safety, program options and availability, and costs to inform their choices when selecting group care and education options. 5. Recruit and retain qualified early childhood care and education providers. 6. Support the expansion of partnerships between Head Start, child care and pre-K to serve 3- and 4-year-olds in response to the impact of COVID-19 on program accessibility. 7. Leverage funding and partnership opportunities to enhance program quality for infants and toddlers throughout Oklahoma’s early childhood care and education system.

47

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS


ECE FEDERAL RELIEF FUNDS In early 2021, Oklahoma Partnership for School Readiness hosted a public webinar with ZERO TO THREE Policy Center and Center for Law and Social Policy (CLASP) highlighting the opportunities the federal American Rescue Plan Act provides to support infants and toddlers and their families. Two panels were featured in the webinar. The first gave a high-level overview of specific funding increases and policy options included in the Act. The second included state leaders who shared what they are most excited about in the Act and how their infant-toddler policy and advocacy priorities will advance equity. According to CLASP, $15 billion of the ARPA funds will provide expanded child care assistance through the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) to support families and providers, including supporting the child care needs of essential workers. The remaining nearly $24 billion creates a stabilization fund for eligible child care providers. These funds can stabilize child care programs by covering a range of expenses such as personnel costs, rent, facility maintenance and improvements, personal protective equipment (PPE) and COVID-related supplies, goods and services needed to resume providing care, mental health supports for children and early educators, and reimbursement of costs associated with the current public health emergency. CLASP also estimated that Oklahoma would receive $589,772,813 of the ARPA funds. OPSR and ZERO TO THREE collaborated to create a list of six recommendations for how our state could use the relief funds to support early childhood in Oklahoma during and beyond the pandemic.

1. Stabilize Oklahoma’s child care industry and retain a highly-qualified workforce. 2. Promote social and emotional competencies for early childhood care and education (ECE) providers and families served. 3. Fund ECE supply-building and increase access to highquality ECE offerings for Oklahoma’s families with young children. 4. Incentivize ECE workforce recruitment and strengthen advancement opportunities to produce a workforce with diverse competencies that supports children’s positive development. 5. Provide support to child care resource and referral agencies (CCR&Rs) to offer technical assistance services and assist as ECE capacitybuilders in communities. 6. Invest in enhanced data collection and one-time funding to establish an early childhood integrated data system (ECIDS).

48


PYRAMID MODEL In April 2020, the OPSR board approved the creation of the Pyramid Model State Leadership Team (PMSLT), allowing Oklahoma to join 31 other states that support and implement the Pyramid Model for Promoting Social Emotional Competence in Infants and Young Children. OPSR and 15 other Oklahoma organizations formed the cross-sector leadership group of early childhood stakeholders that work together to resolve state-level barriers. By using the Pyramid Model framework with its emphasis on strong relationships, this team focuses on professional development as well as facilitating best practices at the local level, including:

1. Enhancing the capacity of workforce to adopt the Pyramid Model 2. Increasing the number of high-quality Pyramid Model trainers and coaches 3. Developing a cadre of high-fidelity programwide and community-wide implementation sites 4. Partnering with families to enhance skills and strategies to support their children 5. Increasing children’s prosocial skills and reduce challenging behavior 6. Preventing and limit expulsion and suspension in early childhood settings The Pyramid Model State Leadership Team meets every other month, while four supporting workgroups meet during the months in between. These workgroups (Communication, Professional Development, Implementation Site, and Data/Evaluation) are in the process of training coaches, convening key stakeholders to continue implementation and considering plans for data collection.

49

ANNUAL REPORT 2021

The Pyramid Model promotes the skills necessary for young children, birth to age 5, to understand and manage their emotions. In addition, it addresses disparities in discipline practices; promotes family engagement; and fosters inclusion of children with, and at risk for, developmental delays and disabilities.

pinterest.com/OKPyramidModel

facebook.com/OKPyramidModel

PUBLIC ENGAGEMENT & PROJECTS


Resources 01

State of Babies Yearbook 2021

09

The State of Babies Yearbook is a national and state resource developed by ZERO TO THREE to tell the story of America’s babies through key indicators in the domains infants and toddlers need to thrive: Good Health, Strong Families, and Positive Early Learning Experiences.

02

America's Health Rankings

Oklahoma provides a variety of voluntary home-based family support programs that deliver services to parents expecting a baby and families with children younger than age 6.

10

For three decades, America’s Health Rankings has provided an analysis of national health on a state-by-state basis by evaluating a historical and comprehensive set of health, environmental and socioeconomic data to determine national health benchmarks and state rankings.

03

04

2019 Oklahoma State Performance Plan: Part C The Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) is a law that makes available a free appropriate public education to eligible children with disabilities throughout the nation and ensures special education and related services to those children. Infants and toddlers, birth through age 2, with disabilities and their families receive early intervention services under IDEA Part C.

05

06

Head Start/Early Head State Grantee Enrollment Report Oklahoma Head Start is a federally funded program that promotes education for children from birth to age 5 for low-income to moderate-income families by enhancing their cognitive, social and emotional development.

08

12

Child Food Insecurity The Feeding America nationwide network of food banks and its partners use Map the Meal Gap in their strategic planning and goal-setting as they work to address current hunger needs and work to end hunger across America.

13

Oklahoma Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program SNAP enables low-income families to buy nutritious food with Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) cards. SNAP recipients spend their benefits to buy eligible food in authorized retail food stores/Farmers' Markets.

14

Child Witnesses to Domestic Violence Child Welfare Information Gateway promotes the safety, permanency, and well-being of children, youth, and families by connecting child welfare, adoption, and related professionals as well as the public to information, resources, and tools covering topics on child welfare, child abuse and neglect, out-of-home care, adoption, and more.

15

Oklahoma Data Matrix The Oklahoma State Department of Education is the state education agency of the State of Oklahoma who determines the policies and directing the administration and supervision of the public school system of Oklahoma.

16

Domestic Violence in Oklahoma The National Coalition Against Domestic Violence (NCADV)'s mission is to lead, mobilize and raise our voices to support efforts that demand a change of conditions that lead to domestic violence such as patriarchy, privilege, racism, sexism, and classism.

Early Learning Fact Sheet 2019 The Center for American Progress is an independent nonpartisan policy institute that is dedicated to improving the lives of all Americans, through bold, progressive ideas, as well as strong leadership and concerted action. Our aim is not just to change the conversation, but to change the country.

Broadband Internet in Oklahoma BroadbandNow helps users find and compare local internet providers using the most comprehensive dataset of internet plans, pricing and availability. Their data comes from the FCC and is supplemented by data provided to us directly by ISPs. They also verify plans and pricing of all 2,000+ ISPs as often as once per month.

State of Preschool Yearbook 2020 The National Institute for Early Education Research (NIEER) improves the learning and development of young children by producing and communicating knowledge that transforms policy and practice.

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Oklahoma Child Care & Early Education Data 2020 The Oklahoma Child Care Resource & Referral Association, Inc. administers the statewide child care resource and referral network. One of the primary roles of the Association is to collect, analyze and report data about how the state is caring for its youngest residents.​

Long-term Effects of Parents’ Education on Children’s Educational and Occupational Success The State of Babies Yearbook is a national and state resource developed by ZERO TO THREE to tell the story of America’s babies through key indicators in the domains infants and toddlers need to thrive: Good Health, Strong Families, and Positive Early Learning Experiences.

2019 National Survey of Children's Health The National Survey of Children’s Health (NSCH) provides rich data on multiple, intersecting aspects of children’s lives—including physical and mental health, access to quality health care, and the child’s family, neighborhood, school, and social context.

Oklahoma Home Visiting Annual Outcomes Report

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The Cost of Child Care in Oklahoma The Economic Policy Institute (EPI) is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank created in 1986 to include the needs of low- and middle-income workers in economic policy discussions.

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2915 N. Classen Blvd. - Unit 400 Oklahoma City, OK 73106 okschoolreadiness.org 405.429.4219


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