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March 2020 eNews

Responding to COVID-19

COVID-19: ICS Policy Posture

Dear Friends of ICS:
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. In response, ICS is coordinating with our many partners to take an assertive posture in national and local policy efforts to make sure that both the early childhood sector specifically – and the nonprofit sector as a whole – remain strong, viable, and best equipped to help those in need. This set of immediate priorities is ever-evolving given the fast-moving nature of the pandemic and proposed responses. Please contact me if you have thoughts on additional items we may wish to consider. 

Click here for a list of ICS’s COVID-19 policy priorities

I hope that you, your families, and your organizations remain healthy and safe. 

Jamie Moon
Jamie Moon, ICS President

ICS to Develop COVID-19 Blog Series

We will be creating a blog series to keep you current on COVID-19 as it pertains to child well-being, childcare, healthcare, and housing to name a few.

This situation is rapidly changing, and so too is the government response at the federal, state, and local levels. Rather than trying to stay on top of the specifics of how each state is adding their own early childhood issues, our goal here is information sharing. We will highlight recommendations from experts, cross-system considerations, and opportunities to learn from. For those who are interested in the specifics of federal and state efforts, we recommend:

Stay tuned for an email and/or social media notifications of our blog series.

Useful Links


Centers for Disease Control: Coronavirus

SC DHEC Education & Resources

Prisma Health Responds

Manage Stress

Psychology Today: Managing Stress in Kids

Kids’ Health Coronavirus (COVID-19): How to Talk to Your Child

Parents: How to Keep Kids Entertained at Home

Centers for Disease Control: Manage Anxiety & Stress

For Parents

Legislative Summary of Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA)

South Carolina School Food Sites

Food and Nutrition Service Guidance

Scholastic Offering Free Online Courses

Charter Offers Free WiFi for to K12 and College Students for 60 days

Cincinnati Zoo Home Safari Live

Tour 12 Virtual Museums

Facebook: Kennedy Space Center

Twitter: Actor Josh Gad (Olaf) Reads

United Way Establishes Worldwide and Local COVID-19 Funds

The United Way of America has launched a global COVID-19 Community Response and Recovery Fund to assist the communities impacted across the world. Your generosity helps people get food, shelter, vital support and accurate information through United Way’s global network.

For readers located in our headquarters’ hometown of Greenville, SC, the COVID-19 Community Relief Fund supports nonprofits working in areas identified as having high numbers of affected individuals and those working with the most vulnerable populations to respond to physical health, mental health, and economic impacts of the pandemic.

Donate to the national fund or support your local agency’s efforts

Expensify to Assist SNAP Recipients in Response to COVID-19

Not everyone has the resources to “shelter in place,” especially the millions of people in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Living paycheck to paycheck is hard when millions of businesses around the nation are closing indefinitely, and hourly workers (including those dependent upon tips) are the hardest hit. In particular, families with kids whose primary meals happen at school are especially vulnerable when those schools shut down. is going to temporarily redirect all of its charitable funds to They are matching SNAP grocery purchases up to $50 per family.

  1. Purchase food as normal with your SNAP card
  2. Download Expensify on iOS or Android, for free
  3. Join the policy
  4. SmartScan the receipt, which will tell us how much you paid and show that it was paid for with an Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) card
  5. Submit it to
  6. Set up your bank account to receive the funds
  7. So long as we have funds available, we will reimburse up to $50 per family (one time), the very next day.

Expensify cannot commit to reimbursing every single person in need—they have no idea how many people will do this, and unfortunately, don’t have unlimited funds. The funds are donated on behalf of Expensify Cardholders via the Karma Points feature, and the generous donors who have signed up for the Corporate and Personal Karma programs.

PS: While you may not personally be on SNAP, please forward this along to anyone based in the US (where the SNAP program operates) you know that may need food assistance.

modified from David Barrett, CEO, Expensify

Status of Events

⦁ Clemson Value of Play Conference begins March 30 * Play Conference is moving to an online format, ⦁ register here * The Play Institute (6 workshops in one full day training aimed at early childhood educators and caregivers) is being postponed to an undetermined date

⦁ SC Legislative Advocacy Day: Child Advocacy Center Day at SC Statehouse * April 1 * Postponed, New Date TBA

⦁ SC Legislative Advocacy Day: Pediatrics Residents Day * April 28 * Postponed, New Date TBA

⦁ Riley Institute Upstate Diversity Leadership Awards * April 28 * Postponed, New Date TBA

Prisma Health Develops Ventilator Device to Increase Capacity for COVID-19 Patients

Prisma Health has received emergency use authorization from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for VESper™, a unique ventilator expansion device that allows a single ventilator to support up to four patients during times of acute equipment shortages such as the current COVID-19 pandemic. Produced using 3D printing technology, the device is developed with material already in use for medical devices and produced at minimal cost.

Hospitals may apply to receive the free source code and printing specifications for the device today by registering on Prisma Health’s website,

source – Prisma Health

New Study: Cincinnati Preschool Program Demonstrates Impact on School Readiness, Leading to Improved Reading and Math Performance, and Higher Graduation Rates  

A landmark study tracking over 2,100 students from kindergarten through high school graduation was conducted in Cincinnati Public Schools. This study adds important new information to the strong body of literature which shows the importance of investing in early childhood.

This is the result of a 15-year data partnership between United Way of Greater Cincinnati’s Success By 6 Initiative, Cincinnati Public Schools and Innovations (community research arm of Cincinnati Children’s Hospital).

Cincinnati children who regularly high-quality preschool, as compared to those who did not, were more likely to be ready for kindergarten. Children who were kindergarten-ready were more likely to meet learning benchmarks in third and eighth grades, and to graduate from high school. 

For more information, see the summaries of the preschool and K-12 findings. Read the entire report here.

Urban Institute Publishes Resources for Understanding Children of Immigrants

Children of immigrants are an important part of this country’s future. All children need quality education, access to health care, and stable housing to thrive. Researchers at the Urban Institute have published a set of data-driven resources—including new state fact sheets—for understanding children of immigrants. These innovative tools can inform policies, programs, and services that will allow children of immigrants to reach their full potential.
Some Key Findings
⦁ Nationwide, over 18 million children—a quarter of all people ages 17 and younger—had at least one immigrant parent in 2017–18.
⦁ Most (91%) are US citizens, and many have families with deep US ties.
⦁ Their family employment is high, yet their family incomes are still relatively low; 48% of children of immigrants lived in families with low incomes in 2017–18, compared with 35% of children with only US-born parents.

Access the Children of Immigrants state-level fact sheets, interactive map, data download tool, and a short overview blog at

Triple P Hits Ground Running in Greenville County

Triple P (Positive Parenting Program) is ready to serve families in Greenville County through Greenville First Steps with funding and support from Children’s Trust and The Duke Endowment.

Read more

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