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COVID-19’s Impact on Child Care in Rural Counties

The attendance rate was relatively similar between rural and non-rural settings for infants and toddlers. However, these numbers differed significantly for older children. For preschoolers, just 26% of those in non-rural counties were still attending versus 38% in in rural counties. For school-age children in non-rural counties, providers were serving just 12% of their capacity for this age range, compared to 41% for rural providers.
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April 2020 eNews

Over the last week, ICS collected responses to a survey of child care providers in South Carolina to better understand how the spread of COVID-19 – and the resulting economic impacts – are affecting the child care sector. The child care sector is essential to the health and well-being of millions of South Carolina families and to our economy as a whole.
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COVID-19 blog: Navigating “Stay-at-Home” Families During the Coronavirus Experience

…go to sleep and wake up at consistent times, set timeframes for meals, and create chunks of time for major activities such as work-related, school-related, physical exercise, connecting with others through technology, and family entertainment and playing...Dress for the social life you desire, not necessarily the more limited social life you have during this period of time. Put on some bright colors—how we dress can impact our mood and feelings about the day.
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March 2020 eNews

The COVID-19 pandemic represents an unprecedented challenge for each of us as individuals and for the institutions we rely on for education, health, employment, and support. The crisis also serves to highlight the vulnerabilities and inequities inherent in many systems, including the early childhood health and education systems.
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Blog Series: COVID-19 Response – Intro

We will highlight recommendations from experts, cross-system considerations, and opportunities to learn from other communities on health, education, child care, child welfare, pregnancy, and more. While adjusting to the realities of our new world may feel like “building the plane while flying it,” the fact is that researchers, policymakers, and providers have decades of experience and literature that can help us chart a research-informed course in the coming weeks and months.
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Forest School Reflection

After observing students in action, I noticed how resourceful everyone was. The children did not rely on plastic toys to bring them entertainment. They used natural materials such as stumps, sticks, leaves, dirt, etc. to design their own learning space for that day. Without the confines of walls and ceilings, students’ minds and bodies were able to explore their surroundings.
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Press Release: Natural Playground Brings European Flair to Nicholtown Community

When compared to traditional playgrounds, Representative Dillard lists numerous advantages natural playgrounds offer – awakening a child’s senses of sight, sound and touch with opportunities to play, feel and explore; offering a multi-phase approach to play; encouraging risk-taking and creativity; and presenting social and learning opportunities as children share and work together to carry out tasks.
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