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June 2020 eNews

Upcoming Events

Webinar: Ideas for Increasing Capital to Child Care Centers during COVID Outbreak

On Tuesday, July 7 at 11:00 am EDT. ICS will present ideas on how to increase the flow of capital into the child care sector using tax policy and other financial mechanisms.  

Presented by John Concklin, ICS Palmetto Associate.  

Register in advance

Through a recent child care center survey, ICS found that child care centers across South Carolina are experiencing unprecedented challenges due to COVID-19. Most notably 48% of centers were forced to close and, on average, each center lost $50,000 between March and May as a result of the epidemic. With the economy “reopening,” child care is essential, with as many as 200,000 children needing child care in order for their parents to get back to work. Yet, due a shortage in capital, child care centers may not have the ability to reopen thereby jeopardizing a critical and necessary sector.

Webinar: Outdoor Learning for COVID-19

On Thursday, July 30 at 11 am EDT, join us for a cross-cultural, interactive event with a video tour of Barnkids in Surrey, England!

11:00 am Eastern Daylight Time/4:00 pm British Summer Time

Presented by ICS Senior Fellow, Mary MacKenzie, and UK Early Years Consultant and Trainer, Rachel Dearnley.

Register in advance

 Research suggests that the community spread of COVID-19 is lower outdoors. The idea of open, child-directed play spaces instead of purpose-built equipment (like jungle gyms) appears to be the way forward as there is less risk of touching the same surfaces again and again. As a result, there is growing interest in high-quality outdoor learning, in sites across the U.S. and throughout the world.

During this webinar, participants will learn how to implement outdoor learning techniques in a practical and economical way. Participants will also take a virtual tour of a forest school, Barnkids, in Surrey, England and hear the managers share their vision and how best to facilitate learning while adhering to Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidelines.

ICS Featured in Greenville News Article

Nearly half of South Carolina’s families live in a child care desert. The pandemic may make it worse.

by Ariel Gilreath, Greenville News

The economic fallout from the coronavirus may cause many child care centers to close permanently.

But, this is not surprising to those in the industry.

“It was always a weak industry, and it was very vulnerable,” said Jamie Moon, president of the Institute for Child Success, a Greenville-based policy and research organization. “The pandemic has only served to highlight that vulnerability, and it’s really a shame because it’s such a critical part of having a robust economy.”

Affordable child care is paramount to a successful workforce and a recovering economy, Moon said, particularly for essential workers who are unable to work from home.

Some studies have shown that high quality, early child care programs also have long-term benefits for children.

A study from the University of Minnesota followed 1,500 children in Chicago for more than 25 years. Researchers found children in early childhood programs were more likely to have “higher educational attainment, lower rates of serious crime and incarceration, and lower rates of depression.”

South Carolina – a ‘child care desert’

In April, the Institute for Child Success surveyed 100 child care centers in South Carolina. 

A third of them said they could not survive a shutdown. Another third said they weren’t sure if they could survive.

And it comes at a time when South Carolina’s families already have few options.

Using Census data, the Center for American Progress found that more than four of every 10 South Carolina families live in places where there are more children than available childcare providers.

They’re known as “child care deserts” and, according to Moon, families with infants, toddlers and pre-K kids end up struggling the most.

“There is a system that exists for K-12,” Moon said. “But what happens before K? It’s a hodgepodge of different things.”

In Greenville County, families in lower-income and rural areas have fewer child care options than neighborhoods in the city with higher median incomes, according to a child care desert map created by the CAP and researchers at the University of Minnesota.

If centers end up closing because of the pandemic, that disparity will only grow, Moon said.

Subscribers, read full Greenville News article

Featured Clip

Deirdre Flynn, Nonprofit Expert, Says ICS at the Forefront of Innovation

Video Clip #6   ICS commissioned an informational video to raise awareness of the good things we are doing in the fields of child development, health care and education, as well as in communities (from Capitol Hill to state capitols to city and county councils to homes) to improve outcomes for young children.  

We asked our partners and supporters to define ICS and have included a brief clip of the video above. We hope that you gain insight on the perspectives of our colleagues across government, academia, non-profit and philanthropy as we highlight a different partner each month. If you would like to see the full-length video, please view it on our Facebook page.


COVID-19 Blog Series

We’ve been bringing you information through our COVID-19 blog series since the beginning of the pandemic in March. Each blog is meant to provide readers with guidance and recommendations for navigating the crisis offered by expert organizations and leading authorities in healthcare, child care, mental health, and child safety.  

Following is a compilation of recently published blogs:      

A Child’s Haven Prepares a Strengths-Based Reopening – by guest blogger Tanya Camunas, Executive Director of A Child’s Haven. ICS spotlights how service providers working with families are considering needs and changing operations.  

Paycheck Protection Program Applications Close June 30. Have You Applied? – As many states begin their individual “reopening” processes, the need for stable, quality child care has never been clearer. However, the economic impacts of COVID-19 have severely strained the child care sector in South Carolina and across the country, leaving many child care centers unsure of their future.  

COVID-19’s Impact on Child Care in Rural Counties – by Megan Carolan, Director of Policy Research. How might COVID-19 be impacting child care providers differently based on where they operate? ICS released an analysis of rural vs. non-rural county responses in order to better explore these differences.

Useful Links

ZERO TO THREE’s State of Babies Yearbook: 2020

Need to keep your kids busy? Fun summertime ideas

Anti-Racism and Equity
Coming Together: Standing Up to Racism, a town hall for kids and families (CNN/Sesame Street)

Anti-Racism Should Be the Goal, Dr. Robert Saul, SC American Academy of Pediatrics Incoming Chair

Commentary: As South Carolina recovers, let’s make equity a priority. Op Ed in Post & Courier, by Melanie Huggins, Executive Director of the Richland Library and board chair of Together SC, and Sherrie Snipes-Williams, CEO of the Charleston Promise Neighborhood and serves on Together SC’s board

Autism Little Learners: Resources and Ideas for Families and Educators

Nature Play at Home: A Guide for Boosting Your Children’s Healthy Development and CreativityIt’s time to redefine essential to include early childhood education (Op Ed) by Loranne Ausley, ICS Board Member

What We’ve Been Up To


June 4 – Health Equity & Systems Leadership by Director of Innovation and Inclusion, Mary C. Garvey and Vice President and General Counsel, Bryan Boroughs. This webinar examined health inequity as one of many issues highlighted and worsened by the COVID-19 pandemic. More than two months into a worldwide crisis, the impacts have been disproportionately felt across society as people of color and those experiencing poverty bear the brunt of the burden. View YouTube recording.

June 18 – The Economic Impact of COVID-19 on SC’s Child Care Sector, led by Director of Policy Research, Megan Carolan. ICS surveyed early care and education providers to understand the effect of the pandemic on the already-fragile early care and education market. The results of the survey show that, like for many other small businesses, the economic impact for child care centers has been sharply negative. View the YouTube recording.

Bulletin Board

Linda Brees headshotLinda Brees, ICS Senior Fellow, has been asked to co-chair the SC Child Wellbeing Coalition, alongside Dr. Janice D. Key, Director of the Boeing Center for Children’s Wellness.  

This coalition is administered by SC Department Health Environmental Control. The goal of this 40+ member coalition is to alleviate the effects of poverty (23% of children in SC live in poverty) and improve outcomes and opportunity (South Carolina’s ranks 39 for child well-being) for all children living in South Carolina. 

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