Co-founded in 2018 by the Heising-Simons Foundation, the Early Childhood Investment Collaborative (the Collaborative) has announced a new funding opportunity designed to address structural barriers to a well-prepared and appropriately compensated early childhood education (ECE) workforce.
The Collaborative is comprised of a group of early childhood funders working to transform early childhood educator preparation and compensation systems at the state level by linking early educator competencies with compensation and transforming their preparation so that all young children have equal access to high-quality learning experiences grounded in the science of child development.
Under this funding opportunity, the Collaborative will support partnerships comprised of institutions of higher education, state agencies, and related entities that want to engage in efforts to catalyze transformative change in the areas of educator preparation and compensation. These efforts may take place within state, territory, or tribal nation early childhood systems.
Support awarded through this opportunity is intended to provide resources to reconceptualize educator preparation systems, including a rethinking of strategies to support recruitment and retention of racially, ethnically, and linguistically diverse students; curricula informed by recent developmental science focused on child development and adult learning that is culturally-responsive in nature; high-quality clinically-based practicum experience across a variety of ECE settings; induction supports provided in the early years of teaching; financial supports for educators to access and complete a higher education program, including paid release time; and a proposed or piloted strategy to increase financial assistance, remuneration, and compensation across an individual’s educational and career pathway as a student and teacher.
The amount to be awarded through this opportunity is approximately $10 million over two years. Grants will vary in size according to identified needs and the proposed reform’s stage of development, with grant awards ranging from a minimum of $200,000 to $600,000 to a maximum of $3 million to $5 million. The Collaborative will not support planning grants (i.e., proposals focused primarily on allocating time and resource budgets toward establishing a new partnership or doing planning without implementation of an idea).
Applications are due March 2, 2020.