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Call It Child Care!

Posted by Liza Baron on September 24, 2019

This week I’m reflecting on something that I continue to feel passionately about. Many of you have heard my thoughts on professionalizing the profession of early childhood and how important it is that we value young children and their early learning experiences. One of the ways we do this is by ensuring our educators have access to professional development opportunities.

I’ve also talked a lot over the years about this word that keeps popping up- DAYCARE. Every time I see it, every time I read it, every time I hear someone refer to the work we do as DAYCARE I cringe a little (okay, A LOT). I’m ecstatic to find state support behind this initiative as Mayor Bill Peduto offers the city of Pittsburgh a proclamation today, Tuesday, September 24, entitled “Call It Child Care.”

Why should we call it child care? Here’s an excerpt from a Trying Together piece:

  1. The impact of child care is much longer than a day.

Early childhood programs support lifelong success for children and families.

  1. The words we use matter because they affect the public’s perception and the field’s own accountability in providing high-quality care.

Using “child care” rather than “day care” recognizes the important work done by adults and the children who are trying to learn, develop, and grow. Accurate language is critical to gaining respect, validation, and ultimately investments in our under-resourced systems.

  1. “Child care” acknowledges the complexity of a high-quality early care and education program.

High-quality child care programs employ, develop, and retain educated and credentialed staff. These professionals use a curriculum, lesson plans, and family engagement activities to promote the development of the whole child in cognitive, social, emotional, and physical domains.

Today, I’m joining Associate Director of JCC ECDC Gina Crough and many others invested in the future of early learning at the mayor’s office for the Mayor’s proclamation.

To learn more about the initiative and all of the work we’re doing in the field, please click here: https://tryingtogether.org/callitchildcare/

Liza Baron, MSW | Director, Early Childhood Development

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