(Jackson, Miss.) – The State of Mississippi has not endured anything quite like the effects of the novel coronavirus in the last hundred years. The Mississippi Department of Human Services (MDHS) is helping child care providers and families navigate this unprecedented environment with coaching and training through partnerships with the Mississippi Early Childhood Inclusion Center, the Mississippi State Department of Health, and the Early Childhood Academy.
“It’s exciting to see how our partners are using technology to provide virtual services in response to COVID-19.” Dr. Chad Allgood, Deputy Director of the MDHS Division of Early Childhood Care and Development said. “By adapting quickly, MDHS and its partners have been able to continue to assist child care providers and families safely.”
Housed within the University of Southern Mississippi’s Institute for Disability Studies, the Mississippi Early Childhood Inclusion Center (MECIC) provides training and technical assistance that focuses on children with special needs, early intervention, and universal design for learning. MECIC has recently developed and implemented online training for the MDHS Child Care Assistance in Isolation Response Plan (CCAIR), based on CDC and Mississippi State Department of Health guidelines.
To learn more about MECIC and the programs they offer, visit https://mecic-usm.org/quality/.
The Early Childhood Academy (ECA) provides technical assistance and professional development to child care providers and families on various topics related to child development and education. ECA oversees the statewide Child Care Resource and Referral Network which provides education resources to families and child care providers.
To learn more about the Early Childhood Academies visit https://secac.ms.gov/early-childhood-academy/.
The Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) licenses and registers child care facilities across the state. Licensing regulations have been established by the Department to help providers meet the health and safety needs of children enrolled in child care. Additionally, MSDH provides training and technical assistance to child care facilities on how to keep children healthy and safe. Families can use the MSDH Find a Child Care Provider website option to search for information about any licensed or registered child care facility.
To learn more about MSDH Child Care Licensure visit www.healthyms.com