News

November 14, 2020

Listen to Black Women: What’s it like to be a Black Woman in Pittsburgh?

Are you a Black woman in Pittsburgh who is interested in sharing your experiences with other Black women in Pittsburgh? Join the Black Women’s Policy Agenda on November 14 for “Listen to Black Women: What’s it like to be a Black Woman in Pittsburgh?

About

Fixing Pittsburgh’s problems starts with listening to Black women! That’s why the Black Women’s Policy Agenda has launched a survey and is facilitating a series of community conversations where Black women share their experiences with other Black women. This event is designed to elevate the voices and experiences of Black women in Pittsburgh. It’s the first step to building collective power among Black women, advocating for the needs of Black women, and advancing policy to achieve racial and gender justice in this region.

Take the Survey

The Black Women’s Policy Agenda is conducting a survey to hear from 250 women in the Pittsburgh region to discover how they are dealing with the double crisis of COVID-19, anti-Black violence, and being a Black woman overall. To complete the survey, visit the Black Women’s Policy Agenda website.

Registration

To register, visit the event webpage. Participants will receive a $25 gift card.

Share this flyer with your network.

News

October 27, 2020

Advocacy 201: Crafting and Sharing Your Message

Are you interested in speaking with elected officials about the importance of early childhood? Join Trying Together on October 27 for our free virtual workshop, “Advocacy 201: Crafting and Sharing Your Message.”

About

Effective messaging helps advocates communicate key points to their audience that can potentially influence their level of support. This workshop is for Early Childhood Education professionals who have taken Trying Together’s Advocacy 101 course (or any other foundational advocacy training) and would like to take the next step in preparing to speak with elected officials.

Course instructors will review early childhood research and effective messaging such as brain science, return on investment, impact on workforce and business community, and high-quality teaching. Attendees will leave the workshop with talking points for meeting with elected officials to advocate for early childhood.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Tuesday, October 27, 2020  |  6:00 – 7:30 p.m.
    • Instructors: Cristina Codario, Emily Neff, and Lindsey Ramsey
    • Core Knowledge Area: Professional and Leadership
    • CDA Content Area: Maintaining Professionalism
    • Registration Deadline: Sunday, October 25, 2020

Registration

To register, visit the course PD Registry page. Space is limited. Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. PQAS and Act 48 credit available.

If you do not have a PD Registry account, please complete this online form to create one. If you are unable to create an account, please contact pdregistry@pakeys.org for more information.

More Information

For questions or more information, contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

News

October 12, 2020

Early Learning is No Small Matter

Are you interested in exploring the most overlooked, underestimated, and powerful force for good in America today? Join Trying Together on Monday, October 12 for our online course “Early Learning is No Small Matter” to discuss the importance of early childhood education.

About

During this course, participants will view the documentary “No Small Matter” and learn how they can leverage the film for advocacy in their programs and communities. Opportunities to bring the film back to their community in support of early learning advocacy will be shared.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Monday, October 12, 2020  |  12:30 – 2:30 p.m.
    • Instructors: Cristina Codario and Lindsey Ramsey
    • Core Knowledge Area: Professional and Leadership
    • CDA Content Area: Maintaining Professionalism
    • Registration Deadline: Saturday, October 10, 2020

Registration

To register, visit the course PD Registry page. Space is limited. Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. PQAS and Act 48 credit available.

If you do not have a PD Registry account, please complete this online form to create one. If you are unable to create an account, please contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org for more information.

More Information

For questions or more information, contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

News

October 6, 2020

ECE Advocacy 101

Are you interested in learning how to use your experience and knowledge to advocate for early childhood? Join Trying Together on October 6 for our free virtual workshop, “ECE Advocacy 101.”

About

The ECE Advocacy 101 workshop is designed to break down the Pennsylvania budget cycle. Participants will receive an overview of the Early Learning PA (ELPA) campaigns, how Early Childhood Education programs are impacted by the budget process, and ways professionals and families can use their experience and knowledge to advocate. Participants will leave with foundational knowledge of the Pennsylvania budget, ELPA campaigns, and various advocacy actions they participate in or lead.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Tuesday, October 6, 2020  |  1:00 – 2:30 p.m.
    • Instructors: Cristina Codario, Emily Neff, and Lindsey Ramsey
    • Core Knowledge Area: Professional and Leadership
    • CDA Content Area: Maintaining Professionalism
    • Registration Deadline: Sunday, October 4, 2020

Registration

To register, visit the course PD Registry page. Space is limited. Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. PQAS and Act 48 credit available.

If you do not have a PD Registry account, please complete this online form to create one. If you are unable to create an account, please contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org for more information.

More Information

For questions or more information, contact Jasmine Davis at jasmine@tryingtogether.org.

News

September 16, 2020

Pennsylvania’s Child Care Crisis: A Virtual Public Forum

Child care providers, teachers, parents, and advocates in Pennsylvania are invited to join Start Strong PA on September 16 for “Pennsylvania’s Child Care Crisis: A Virtual Public Forum.” The Forum will include an important discussion with the congregational delegation regarding Pennsylvania’s child care crisis.

About

During the Forum, featured speakers will present the following:

    • PennState’s Dr. Philip Sirinides will review major takeaways and recommendations from a new study documenting the financial impact of COVID-19 on the child care sector.
    • Pennsylvania Chamber of Business Industry President and CEO Gene Barr will discuss child care’s vital role in Pennsylvania’s economic recovery.
    • Providers, advocates, and others will detail the changing face of child care and challenges caused by COVID-19, the essential role that child care will have for working families in a recovering economy, and the need for additional financial stabilization assistance to prevent the collapse of the sector.

A question and answer session with panelists and members of Congress will follow these presentations.

Registration

To register for the Forum, visit the event webpage. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar.

News

July 28, 2020

Culturally Responsive Parent Engagement

Are you interested in learning how to create a more culturally and linguistically responsive early learning environment? Join the National Center on Parent, Family, and Community Engagement (NCPFCE) on July 28 for their webinar, “Culturally Responsive Parent Engagement.”

About

In this webinar, participants will explore tools, resources, and ideas they can use to create a more culturally and linguistically responsive environment. Join fellow educators to learn how it can help families engage in their child’s early learning and hear from programs that have successfully engaged families from diverse backgrounds as leaders and advocates.

This webinar is best suited for Head Start and Early Head Start directors, managers, family services staff, and parent leaders; T/TA providers; and early childhood leaders who support children and their families.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the event webpage. Participants will receive a certificate of participation upon completion of the webinar.

More Information

For questions, contact NCPFCE at pfcewebinars@ecetta.info or 855.208.0909.

News

July 22, 2020

Connections and Conversations: Advocacy 101

Are you interested in learning about the budget process and state government in Pennsylvania? Join Trying Together on July 22 at 6 p.m. for our online session, “Connections and Conversations: Advocacy 101.”

About

Connections and Conversations Virtual Check-Ins are interactive sessions that highlight topics of interest to the field of early childhood education. Participants will engage in virtual discussions via Zoom with child development experts while interacting with early learning practitioners to share questions, experiences, and expertise about the highlighted topic.

This session will highlight the budget process and state government in Pennsylvania. Participants will receive an overview of the Early Learning Pennsylvania (ELPA) campaigns, how early childhood education programs are impacted by the budget process, and ways professionals and families can use their experiences and knowledge to advocate. This session will also identify advocacy actions attendees can participate in or lead to advocate for early childhood.

Participants will receive the course Zoom link via email within 24 hours before the start date for the course. For questions, contact Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org or Sarah Grubb at sarah.elrc5@alleghenycounty.us.

Session Details

    • Session Date: Wednesday, July 22 | 6 – 7 p.m
    • Instructors: Emily Neff, Cristina Codario, and Lindsey Ramsey
    • CKC: K6.10 C1
    • CDA Subject Area: Maintaining a commitment to professionalism.
    • Registrations must be submitted by Monday, July 20. Space is limited.
    • Sessions will be offered biweekly and will offer one hour of PQAS credit. Act 48 credit will not be offered.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the course webpage.

Session Rules and Guidelines

These virtual discussions are designed to provide educators the opportunity to grow professionally and share knowledge on early childhood topics. During the meeting, participants should follow the guidelines below to ensure a successful virtual meeting for all participants.

    • Please allow all participants a chance to speak. Listen respectfully and actively.
    • Commit to learning about each other, not to debating the topic.
    • Embrace differences of opinion as healthy and support each person’s authentic self-expression.
    • Participants will be muted for the beginning portion of the session.
    • Participants may use the “Raise Hand” feature in Zoom to request an opportunity to comment or ask a question. Individuals will be temporarily unmuted by the moderator.
    • Participants may type a comment or question in the Chat or may send comments or questions directly to the moderator for them to share.
    • To receive PQAS credit, you must complete an evaluation at the end of the session and include your PD Registry number.
    • Have fun, make connections, and engage in the conversations!

More Information

For questions or more information, please contact Rosie Hogan at rosie@tryingtogether.org.

News

June 16, 2020

Fostering Fathers’ Leadership Skills

Are you interested in learning how to build a father-friendly program? Join the National Center on Early Childhood Health and Wellness (NCECHW) on June 16 for their webinar, “Fostering Fathers’ Leadership Skills.”

About

In this webinar, participants will explore tools, resources, and ideas they can use to build a father-friendly program. Register to learn how to create an environment that actively encourages fathers to engage with their child’s learning and development. Participants will also review examples of program efforts that help fathers continue to build their voices as leaders in early childhood programs and their communities.

This webinar is best suited for Head Start and Early Head Start directors, managers, family services staff, and parent leaders; T/TA providers; and early childhood leaders who support children and their families. Participants will receive a certificate of participation upon completion of the webinar.

Featured Topics

Topics for the webinar include:

    • exploring the importance of developing a program environment that promotes fathers’ leadership;
    • preparing staff to successfully integrate father engagement into their programs; and
    • sharing tips from programs that engage fathers as leaders and advocates in their work.

Registration

To register and learn more, visit the event webpage.

More Information

For questions, contact NCECHW at pfcewebinars@ecetta.info or 855.208.0909.

Photo Credit

Photography by Emily O’Donnell.

News

February 7, 2020

2020-21 Pennsylvania Budget Proposal Response

On February 5, during his 2020-2021 budget proposal address, Governor Tom Wolf dared us to imagine a Pennsylvania where no one is denied the chance to work because they can’t find child care. A Pennsylvania where high-quality child care is accessible and affordable. A Pennsylvania where child care rates are stabilized and child care providers are incentivized. Trying Together belives in that dream, but the budget proposal itself offers no new state investments to make these dreams a reality.

About

While the 2020-21 budget proposal offered increased state investments in early childhood programs like pre-k and home-visiting, it’s missing state investments for something that affects the lives of every parent and caregiver in Pennsylvania: child care. Early Learning PA highlights this issue in their recent press release, stating, “Given that 70 percent of Pennsylvania children under the age of five have all adults in their household in the labor force, high-quality child care is an essential workforce support.” However, due to high prices and limited child care slots, many families across the Commonwealth are not able to afford or access high-quality child care programs.

Early Learning PA continues on, stating, “Although the Governor’s budget proposal utilizes $15.3 million in federal funding toward child care subsidy base rates, this proposal will have no impact in addressing the list of children waiting to gain access to subsidized care or improve the quality of that care.” This, in turn, affects each caregiver’s ability to enter, re-enter, or remain in the workforce and the long-term academic, career, and health outcomes of young children. In Pennsylvania, 73 percent of eligible children under the age of five are not receiving high-quality child care services.

Interestingly, the lack of state investment is also a lack of response to the Governor’s own Keystone Economic Development and Workforce Command Center report, just released last week identifying barriers to employment and providing recommendations for action by the governor, Pennsylvania General Assembly, and private sector. In the report, increasing access to affordable high-quality child care was a top priority for all three.

Take Action

The lack of state investments in child care isn’t only something worth talking about, it’s also an issue that worthy of advocacy. Join us as an advocate by sending a message urging the General Assembly to demonstrate their commitment to Pennsylvania’s youngest children, their families, and our economy by increasing state funding for high-quality child care! Our senators and representatives will need to hear from us through budget negotiations, and our message starts now.

Join us if you believe that all children in Pennsylvania deserve to start strong!

News

February 4, 2020

2020 Census | Count All Kids to Reinforce Early Education

Did you know that in 2010, five percent of children under the age of five weren’t counted in the 2010 Census? That’s roughly one million young children, the highest of any age group. To ensure all young children have access to high-quality, affordable early learning experiences, we must #CountAllKids in the upcoming 2020 Census.

About

The United States Census informs funding decisions for critical services and infrastructure in our communities, including the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP); the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Toddlers (WIC); and the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) to name a few. However, in the 2010 U.S. Census, there was an undercount of 25,197 children in Pennsylvania, resulting in the loss of nearly $44 million in federal funding. That’s roughly $1,746 lost for every child who wasn’t counted. Undercounts like this negatively impact Pennsylvania’s children and families, as social service programs are unable to provide services to all eligible families due to limited funding.

Why It Matters

In their report “The Road to Success Includes High-Quality Pre-K,” Pre-K for PA states that “high-quality, publicly funded pre-k programs prepare students for kindergarten and beyond by supporting the development of the whole child.” When a child is 3- or 4-years-old, they’re developing critical skills like problem-solving, emotional self-regulation, collaboration, and more. These social-emotional skills are what the Harvard Education Magazine calls an “on-ramp” to later academic success. In fact, Pre-K for PA states that “studies of children who were enrolled in high-quality social-emotional learning programs have shown that ‘[enrolled children] score, on average, 11 percentage points higher on academic tests than children who do not receive such instruction.'”

However, due to limited funding, “in nearly two out of three state Senate districts, less than half of eligible preschoolers attend a high-quality pre-k program. In half of the state House districts, less than 40 percent of eligible 3- and 4-year-olds are currently attending one.” Limited access to such programs is negatively impacting the lives of young children, as “children from low-income families are a year or more behind their more advantaged peers.”

One partial solution to these issues is to ensure that all kids are counted in the upcoming 2020 Census. While an accurate count may not entirely eliminate issues of access, quality, and affordability, it will ensure that Pennsylvania receives federal dollars needed to provide health and social services to eligible families in the Commonwealth. Will you help us raise awareness about the need to #CountAllKids!

Click here to view Pre-K for PA’s full report.

Available Tools

Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children

To help increase awareness about the 2020 Census, Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children developed a toolkit that features factsheets, posters, social media images, and social media post templates. In addition to the toolkit, Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children highlighted a list of resources for advocates, stakeholders, businesses, elected officials, military members, parents, caregivers, families, and people with disabilities. To access the full list, visit the Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children website.

2020 Census: Be Counted

2020 Census: Be Counted provides information and resources to Pittsburgh and Allegheny County residents about the upcoming U.S. Census. The website highlights important dates, census submission options, an example of the questionnaire, frequently asked questions (FAQs), and more. For organizations, the website offers a toolkit, email newsletter, mini-grants, and more.

Request a Mail-In Ballot

Pennsylvania is now offering two options community members can choose from to submit their vote if they are unable to get to the polls on election day, including a mail-in ballot and absentee ballot. Registered voters can submit either ballot via mail or in person at their county election office. To request a mail-in ballot, please complete the online application by clicking here.

Both mail-in and absentee voters will receive a ballot in the mail to complete and return to their county election office by 8 p.m. on election day.

More Information

If you’re interested in learning more about the 2020 Census, read our “Count All Kids in the 2020 Census” news post. The post features additional resources and information about who counts, submitting your data, safety, confidentiality, and more.

*Information provided by Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children, Pre-K for PA, and the United States Census Bureau