Quality & Equity in Early Learning

Under Quality and Equity in Early Learning we strive for all children in Sonoma County to have strong healthy relationships with their caregivers. We work to ensure Sonoma County’s early care and education sector has access to tools, resources and supports to build, sustain and enhance a diverse, culturally responsive, and mixed delivery system that meets the needs of our families.

4Cs Quality Counts Early Learning Coaching and Professional Development Project is a quality improvement, recognition, and support program for early care and education sites in Sonoma County. Quality Counts provides multiple pathways for the Sonoma County early learning and care providers in high need focus communities to improve their overall skills in working with young children, their parents and their caregivers. Our project assists in establishing the definition of “high quality” for the early learning community to include an emphasis on the importance of family partnerships, culturally and linguistic responsive environments, interactions, and curriculum across all of our services (coaching, training, quality improvement plans, and technical assistance). Additionally, all services are based in, and inclusive of Trauma Informed Care & Recognition and Dual Language Acquisition best practices.
By participating in Quality Counts, programs will receive: Access to local free or reduced-cost professional development trainings; Ongoing on-site support, training, and coaching; Financial and/or material participation incentives (when funding allows); Recognition by our Building Blocks program (optional). Anyone who provides care or education for a child (ren) ages 0-5 qualifies for our support.
Early Learning Institute’s Consultation Project has proudly partnered with Sonoma County’s childcare and preschool community since 2001. The Consultation Project provides FREE and confidential consultation to childcare providers and preschool teachers serving children birth through age 5 who have not yet begun Kindergarten. Our team of consultants include: mental health clinicians, early childhood education specialists, early interventionists, occupational therapists and parent educators. We work collaboratively with childcare providers, preschool teachers and families to address behavioral, developmental, mental health, or family issues. We help facilitate positive relationships with parents and develop collaborative goals and action plans to address the needs of the child, family and program. While we often focus on the needs of a specific child, consultation builds the capacity of teachers and providers to work with all children.
For over a decade, Teachers Acquiring Language Learner Knowledge (The TALLK Project) has intentionally focused on supporting educators to meet the needs of Dual Language Learners (DLL) in early care settings. TALLK has partnered with the Child Care Planning Council of Sonoma County to provide focused DLL professional development and support to ECE coaches. Providers whose coaches take part in the project, will be invited to join incentivized Communities of Practice which will serve as a space for them to talk about the DLL strategies, reflect, and share effective practice and resources. Additionally, the TALLK and CCPC team will work to develop and implement a uniform Home Language Interview used across the county.
Community Action Partnership of Sonoma County (CAP) will implement coaching for Pasitos group leaders at CAP, the Petaluma Adult School, La Luz and other community partners that implement Pasitos. Coaching will emphasize language development, social-emotional development, and trauma informed care. CAP will coordinate with other QEEL grantees to institutionalize supports for young dual language learners.

Dual Language Support Programs

Abriendo Puertas / Opening Doors (AP/OD) is the nation’s first evidence-based comprehensive training program developed by and for Latino parents with children ages 0-5. The program’s principle, “Building a Better Future Through Parent Leadership,” emphasizes the role of engaged parents and the impact of culture inclusion on lesson development and their children’s long-term educational outcomes. The Abriendo Puertas curriculum is currently being offered at Community Action Partnership (707) 544-6911La Luz Center (707) 938-5131Petaluma Adult School (707) 778-4697, and River to Coast Children’s Services (707) 869-3613.

Reach Out and Read is a national pediatric early literacy program that prepares America’s youngest children to succeed in school by partnering with doctors to prescribe books and encourage families to read together. Doctors and nurses are trained to advise parents about the importance of reading aloud and to give new books to children at pediatric well child visits (check-ups) from 6 months through 5 years of age, with a special focus on children growing up in poverty and medically underserved areas. By building on the unique relationship between parents and the health care team, Reach Out and Read helps families and communities encourage early literacy skills so children enter school prepared for success in reading. Remember to check with your Pediatrician at participating Santa Rosa Community Health clinics.