January 11, 2019
Olympia — The Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) was recently awarded a federal Preschool Development Birth Through Five Grant (PDG B-5) from the Department of Health and Human Services. DCYF was awarded $5,270,656 through December 31, 2019.
DCYF recognizes early learning services as a core prevention strategy. The PDG B-5 award will allow the agency to strengthen and build integrated services across early learning and child welfare, including the expansion of crucial programs for children such as home visiting and the state’s Early Childhood Education and Assistance Program (ECEAP).
“DCYF is tasked with transforming how we prepare our state’s children for kindergarten. We must implement high-quality early learning strategies, paying particular attention to children furthest from opportunity,” said Ross Hunter, Secretary of the Department of Children, Youth, and Families. “The Preschool Development Grant provides us the funding to begin some of that work by implementing programming that will support families navigating services for children birth to five. High quality pre-k is key to school readiness, especially for our most vulnerable children.”
Funding from the PDG B-5 will be used to facilitate collaboration and coordination among existing programs of early childhood care and education. DCYF will use the current statewide mixed-delivery system to prepare low-income and disadvantaged infants, toddlers, and young children to enter kindergarten.
Building on the state’s Early Learning Plan established in 2010, DCYF will conduct a comprehensive statewide birth through five needs assessment, followed by in-depth strategic planning to help further advance the agency’s work to support families and providers caring for our state’s youngest children.
The PDG B-5 is a $242 million competitive federal grant opportunity open to all states and territories. For more information on the PDG B-5, visit https://www.acf.hhs.gov/occ.