November 18, 2019

2019 Market Rate Survey and YOU | Webinar

Every three years, states update information regarding the prices child care providers charge families. Join the Pennsylvania Child Care Association (PACCA) on December 4 for “2019 Market Rate Survey and YOU,” a webinar that will explain the importance of the Survey and how to enter current program information in PELICAN Provider Self-Service.


In this webinar, staff from the Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) will talk about the importance of the 2019 Market Rate Survey and explain how to access Provider Self-Service, what providers will see when they login to their program, and how to ensure that current information from your program is reflected as OCDEL looks at Child Care Works reimbursement rates.

With this, OCDEL invites all Pennsylvania certified child care providers to participate in the 2019 Market Rate Survey now through December 30, 2019. The easiest way to share this information is to ensure your prices are correct in the online Provider Self-Service Portal. Updated information from child care providers will provide more accurate information to determine child care prices in Pennsylvania and will provide OCDEL with important data to compare private pay prices with the Child Care Works reimbursements known as base rates.


Attendees must register by 12:00 p.m. on December 4, 2019. To register, visit the event webpage.

More Information

For questions, contact Maureen Murphy at 717.657.9000, x 107.

*Information provided by the Pennsylvania Child Care Association (PACCA)


October 10, 2019

Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership Summit

On December 3, staff from Trying Together’s Policy Team will be presenting at the 2019 Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership (GPNP) Summit.


Join the Greater Pittsburgh Nonprofit Partnership on December 3 for the 2019 GPNP Summit at the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown Hotel. The Summit will be an intensive, collaborative enrichment opportunity to learn new skills and tactics for achieving measurable success based on strategy, partnership, data, and hard work. With this, a particular focus will be placed on addressing pressing social issues in southwestern Pennsylvania, including those that concern:

    • education,
    • economic stability,
    • social and community context,
    • neighborhood and the build environment,
    • and health and health care.

Onsite child care for children ages 2-12 years of age is available at no cost to the participant. However, pre-registration is required by November 15 as space is limited.

Our Session

At the event, Trying Together’s Director of Public Policy, Lissa Geiger Shulman, and PK-3 Public Policy Manager, Emily Neff, will be presenting their session, “Collaborating for Effective Early Childhood Advocacy.” Interested parties are invited to attend the session from 2:30 p.m. to 3:45 p.m. on December 3, 2019.

This session will explore:

    • the history behind the formation of a coalition for early learning in Pennsylvania that represents both traditional and non-traditional stakeholders,
    • advocacy successful of growing state funding in multiple line items through the launch of three coordinated campaigns,
    • and challenges and opportunities presented by collaborating with partners in advocacy work.

See the full agenda.


Regular registration closes on November 22, with varying fees dependant on registration type. Onsite registration will be available at an increased price. See the full pricing guide.

To register, visit the event webpage.

More Information

For questions, contact Sue Gove at 412.431.5087 or

To learn more about the Summit, visit the event webpage.


October 9, 2019

2019 Trauma Summit | Building Connections & Hope

Join Pressley Ridge from October 23–24 for their 2019 Trauma Summit.


Over the course of two days, the 2019 Trauma Summit will be an exchange of information, an exploration of successful strategies, and an opportunity for deeper dialogue on what sustains hope for those who have experienced significant adversity.

Participants are also invited to join a private reception with Dr. Bruce Perry on the eve of the Summit, October 22, from 5:30 to 7:30 at Pressley Ridge’s headquarters. Click here to learn more.


To register and learn more, visit the event webpage.


For questions, contact Pressley Ridge at 412.872.9400 or ​


September 6, 2019

Raising Readers Together Club | Ages 0-5

The Raising Readers Together Club runs weekly and explores the importance of acceptance, equality, and tolerance through reading. Thursday sessions are suitable for children ages five and younger.

Raising Readers provides free books, discussion, food, songs, storytelling, and resources.

Fall 2019 Books:

    • September 19: You Hold Me Up
    • September 26: Sign Off
    • October 3: When Aidan Became a BrotherMommy’s Khimar
    • October 10: Magnets Push, Magnets Pull
    • October 17: Mixed: A Colorful Story
    • October 24: How Rocket Learned to Read
    • October 31: Pop Pop and Me*
    • November 7: Mary Had a Little Glam

*The October 31 Raising Readers Together Club session will be hosted at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh in Homewood – 7101 Hamilton Avenue, Pittsburgh, PA 15208.


For questions or more information, contact Cynthia Battle at 412.567.1304 or

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August 20, 2019

RADical Days Returns With 25 Days of Free Events

Celebrating the Allegheny Regional Asset District’s (RAD) 25th year, RADical Days is returning to Pittsburgh this September and October, featuring 25 days of free activities!


Established by the Allegheny Regional Asset District (RAD), RADical Days describes these events as “an annual thank you to the public,” featuring free admission, tours, performances, and family activities offered by organizations and attractions funded by RAD.

RAD’s mission is to support and finance regional assets in the areas of libraries, parks, recreation, cultural, sports, and civic facilities and programs. In 2019, RAD adopted a $108.6 million budget serving 104 regional assets. Some 31% of the funding will go to support libraries; 31% to parks, trails and other green spaces; 13% to sports and civic facilities; 13% to arts and culture organizations; 8% to regional facilities (Zoo, Aviary, Phipps Conservatory);  and 3% to transit.

Event Overview

RADical Days 2019 features many events, including free admission to:

    • the Andy Warhol Museum,
    • Carnegie Science Center,
    • Children’s Museum & Museum Lab,
    • Frick Pittsburgh
    • Heinz History Center,
    • Hill Dance Academy Theatre,
    • National Aviary,
    • Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre,
    • Pittsburgh Botanic Garden,
    • Saturday Light Brigade Radio,
    • and more!


To see a full RADical Days 2019 schedule, visit their website or download their PDF!

Learn More

To learn more about RAD and RADical Days, visit their website!

*Information provided by RADical Days


August 19, 2019

First Up: Champions for Young Children

Join First Up on September 24 as they celebrate the 2019 Champion of Young Children and raise funds for a worthy cause!


For 25 years, First Up has honored individuals and companies from outside the field of early childhood education for their dedication and commitment to young learners at the Champions for Young Children event. Past Champions have included elected officials, authors, industry leaders, foundations, and corporations that have made a significant investment to benefit all children in Southeastern Pennsylvania.

At this event, participants will eat, dance, and play, with ticket purchases including open access to a selection of beer and wine, a chef-curated menu, and opportunities to release their inner-child through quality early education experiences with a grown-up twist.


Registration for this event is now open and can be completed on the First Up website.

NAEYC Members

NAEYC members receive a $50 discount by registering with Drew Martin at

More Information

For more information, contact First Up at or 215.893.0130.


July 29, 2019

New Services Available on Pennsylvania’s PD Registry

In July, Pennsylvania’s PD Registry received new enhancements that will help support early childhood professionals.

New Services Available

Through the PD Registry website, early childhood professionals can now apply for or access:

Early Childhood Career Pathway

The Early Childhood Education Career Pathway is a tool to support the ECE profession in entering the field prepared for success while growing the existing professional’s capacity to advance in their intended field. This tool is now available on PD Registry. To learn more, visit the Pennsylvania Key website.


The Career Lattice will still be used for Keystone STARS designation and Education and Retention Awards (ERA) until further notice. Additionally, early childhood educators that currently meet the expectation of particular career lattice level will be honored at that level by being grandfathered into the Career Pathway level that is equivalent if verified within the determined timeline.

Many individuals have already uploaded transcripts before the new enhancements went live on July 1. You will still need to complete your profile to be placed on the career pathway. If transcripts were already uploaded, this step will not be needed again. To view tip sheets on completing the profile and uploading transcripts, please view them at the PA Keys website.

More Information

For more information on these enhancements, watch the recorded webinar, visit the FAQ document, and view tipsheets and more on the PD Registry.

Questions? Call 1.800.284.6031 or email

*Information provided by The Pennsylvania Key


May 1, 2019

Carnegie Library’s 2019 List of Best Books for Babies

For the twentieth time since 2000, a group of local librarians and child development experts has sorted through the previous year’s publications to select and promote the 10 Best Books for Babies.

About Best Books for Babies

The Best Books for Babies project is intended to encourage reading beginning at birth and recognize publishers who create excellent books for the very youngest listeners. The books selected, from sturdy board books to fun lift-the-flap titles to charming picture book portraits of young families, will delight and engage babies age birth through 18 months and the adults who care for them.

See the List

Families and caregivers can view the full list by visiting the Library’s PDF.

Where to Find Them

Pick up one or more of these books at a Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh branch near you. In addition to spending some cozy time together, you’ll be preparing baby’s brain to learn and grow.

*Information provided by the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh


April 18, 2019

PA Pre-K Counts Announces Request for Applications

Pennsylvania’s fiscal year (FY) 2019-20 proposed budget continues to build on the governor’s commitment to high-quality early learning services and includes more than $1.1 billion in state and nearly $850 million in federal support for Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) programs. This proposal represents the further steps toward achieving the goal of universal access to high-quality pre-k programs.

With new investments in Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts ($40 million) and the Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program ($10 million), the state will be able to increase the number of children served in high-quality pre-k. Due to this proposed funding, the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) is seeking applicants for PA Pre-K Counts.

About Pre-K Counts

PA Pre-K Counts provides children with the opportunity to experience a high-quality pre-kindergarten program. The program standards ensure a high return on the investment in the preparation of young children for school and will help to close the achievement gap. Early education through PA Pre-K Counts can open the doors of opportunity for every child to do well in school, the workforce, and life.

About the Request for Applications (RFA)

PDE is issuing this RFA to support providers in preparing to serve children and to be ready for September enrollment. The department recognizes that providers need to conduct outreach to families; recruit, hire and train staff; and do all of the planning necessary to successfully implement the program pending approval of proposed funding.

Information on the application process can be accessed at PKC How to Apply.

Eligible Applicants

Pennsylvania continues to be committed to a mixed delivery system. As such, eligible applicants include existing PA Pre-K Counts grantees and new applicants from five eligible entity categories:

  1. School districts;
  2. PDE Licensed nursery schools;
  3. Head Start grantees;
  4. Child care centers and group child care homes designated at Keystone STAR 3 or 4; and
  5. A third party entity applying for Pennsylvania Pre‐K Counts funding to administer the lead agency responsibilities for entities that are eligible to provide the classroom services under the categories listed above.

PDE encourages all eligible entities to assess community need and apply for funding to support eligible children in their communities. There is no limit to the number of slots that may be requested through this application process.

Eligibility Criteria

Age (three and four-year-old children) and family income (at or below 300 percent of the Federal Poverty Guidelines) are the primary eligibility criteria for participation in PA Pre-K Counts. Additional priorities for enrollment should be developed at the local level and may include:

  • teen parents,
  • migrant or seasonal students,
  • children of a family experiencing homelessness,
  • children involved in the child welfare system,
  • siblings of children already enrolled in the program,
  • English language learners,
  • children of an incarcerated parent, or
  • children receiving early intervention or behavioral health supports.

Required Documentation

Applicants must have the following in place to complete an application: a Letter of Intent, a vendor number (SAP #), an administrative unit number (AUN), a master provider index number (MPI), and a federal ID number or tax ID number.

PA Pre-K Counts Statute, Regulations, and Guidance

Any applicant should thoroughly review PA Pre-K Counts Statute, Regulations, and Guidance prior to submission of a letter of intent to apply to ensure an understanding of the program requirements and expectations of compliance if an application is successful. The application review process will include evaluation of the extent to which the applicant demonstrates knowledge and understanding of the PA Pre-K Counts Statute and Regulations.

Required Letter of Intent

Because of the need to establish access to eGrants procurement system, eligible organizations must submit a completed Letter of Intent to apply for funds. The template posted at PKC How to Apply must be used. The Letter of Intent represents intent to apply for PA Pre-K Counts funding and includes the legal name of the eligible agency that will apply, the AUN associated with the applying legal entity, preliminary information about requested funding, program model, provider type, and area to be served. Except for the legal entity and AUN, information submitted in the Letter of Intent may be modified in the final eGrants application.

Programs interested in applying must submit a fully completed Letter of Intent by 3 pm on May 8, 2019 to Programs that do not submit a timely Letter of Intent will not be able to apply in the eGrants system. Late submissions will not be accepted. Those agencies submitting a fully complete Letter of Intent by the due date will be notified when the PA Pre-K Counts application is open in eGrants.

Administrative Unit Number (AUN Number)

PA Pre-K Counts applicants will need to supply a valid AUN number within the Letter of Intent. A Letter of Intent without a valid AUN that matches the legal name of the applying entity will not be accepted. To verify your AUN number or to check to see if you have one assigned to your agency, visit EDNA. If you are an Intermediate Unit, select Search for Intermediate Units. If you are not an Intermediate Unit, select Advanced Search, and search for your agency.

Applicants that are not already licensed by PDE and therefore do not have an AUN number should contact Brian Bell (, 717.346.0038) or James Redd ( at OCDEL.

Vendor Number (SAP #)

The supplied vendor number MUST align with the legal name and address provided in the application. A vendor number and account can be set up by registering at Vendor Number Registration selecting the Non-Procurement Registration Form. All agencies applying for PA Pre-K Counts grants must be pre-registered. The Central Vendor Management Unit is a storage database. The Comptroller uses this account to store direct deposit information.

If you have any questions about vendor numbers, please contact Brian Bell (, 717.346.0038) or James Redd ( at OCDEL.

Master Provider Index (MPI #)

The supplied MPI number MUST align with the legal name and address provided in the application. All PA Pre-K Counts applicants will need an MPI number if the application is successful. The number is requested as part of the application process to ensure timely contracting for approved applications. MPI numbers are used by the PA Department of Human Services to identify legal entities and service locations that participate in any of its programs. As such, they are used in PELICAN as a common identifier for all OCDEL programs, including child care licensing, Early Intervention, PA Pre-K Counts, Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program, and Keystone STARS.

Legal entities are assigned a unique nine-digit MPI number. In addition, service locations are assigned a unique 13-digit MPI number, which is created by adding a four-digit extension to the nine-digit MPI of the legal entity. Legal entities and service providers currently participating in any of these programs should have an MPI number.

Applicants that are not currently participating in any of these programs should contact the Early Learning Network (ELN) Help Desk at 877.491.3818 and provide their Federal Tax ID to determine their MPI numbers. MPI numbers will not be provided without a Federal Tax ID number.

Tax ID Number or Federal ID Number

This is the number that an agency uses on its federal W-9 form. Applicants for PA Pre-K Counts funds should consult with the person who handles tax, legal, or accounting matters for the agency to determine the federal ID number. Use the number that aligns with the legal name and address provided in this application. The correct number must be provided when requested in order to process an application. Failure to do so will result in significant delays in funding approved applicants for FY 2019-20. This number is often referred to as the “FEIN number” by OCDEL staff.

Pre-application recorded webinar

An asynchronous pre-application webinar will be posted at PKC How to Apply after April 23, 2019 to assist interested applicants in the completion of the application. The webinar will include information on the application process and program requirements.

Questions & More Information

All questions regarding this competitive RFA process should be directed to Project Officer Deborah Wise only, by sending an email to

In order to provide consistent messaging and an equitable application process, ONLY questions sent to, will be addressed. Questions and responses not already covered in either Pennsylvania Pre-K Counts Statute, Regulations, and Guidance, or within the Application Guidance document, will be included in an on-going Frequently Asked Questions document posted at PKC How to Apply.