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Family Connection Center Hopes to Improve Children's Chances for Success

Oct. 12, 2006 — The need to combat the many challenges facing local children and their families led to the development of the Family Connection Center, a project spearheaded by the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands to offer training and developmental services to parents and child care providers.
Opening ceremonies for the center, located at Vitraco Park Mall on St. Thomas, will be held at 11 a.m. (corrected) on Saturday.
According to information collected by CFVI, studies show that promoting early childhood development and providing positive learning experiences for young children improve a child's ability to succeed in school.
"When pre-schoolers enter kindergarten with good social developmental skills, their ability to learn influences their positive progress throughout school. Schools can then raise their standards and deliver higher quality education," a CFVI pamphlet says.
Kids Count information compiled by CFVI over the past few years indicate quality child care programs provide students with greater readiness for school, reduced need for placement in remedial special education programs, higher rates of high school graduation and a decreased involvement in the criminal justice system, among other things.
"Children who are at risk because of poverty, family disruption or other factors can benefit particularly from such programs," the 2003 Kids Count Data book says.
In terms of meeting the needs of both parents and child care providers, a CFVI study conducted over a three-year period on both national and local levels finds:
— the training of child care providers and caregivers is important in determining the quality of a particular child care center;
— there are few professional enrichment opportunities available within the territory for private child care providers; and
— while many states are developing early care and professional education development systems, programs and licensing requirements within the territory remain "fragmented."

At the Family Connection Center, programs and services for child care providers include training, quality-enhancement grants and the availability of technical assistance and resources to improve child care quality, among other things.
Parents are also able to access information and resources about child development, school readiness and tips on how to choose quality child care.
Since the territory currently has no child care centers accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the professional development center at the Family Connection Center will additionally provide resources, technical assistance and support to a set number of centers in the territory and help them to obtain that accreditation.
The Family Connection Center will also help individuals to obtain Child Development Associate (CDA) credentials, which show that a provider is able to meet the specific needs of children and can work with parents and other adults to develop a child's "physical, social, emotional and intellectual growth."
According to information released by CFVI, it will take about $175,000 annually to operate the Family Connection Center. Financing will be provided by the Family Connection Endowment Fund, federal grant funds, fund-raising initiatives, legislative mandates and user fees and other incentives created to generate revenues.
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Oct. 12, 2006 -- The need to combat the many challenges facing local children and their families led to the development of the Family Connection Center, a project spearheaded by the Community Foundation of the Virgin Islands to offer training and developmental services to parents and child care providers.
Opening ceremonies for the center, located at Vitraco Park Mall on St. Thomas, will be held at 11 a.m. (corrected) on Saturday.
According to information collected by CFVI, studies show that promoting early childhood development and providing positive learning experiences for young children improve a child's ability to succeed in school.
"When pre-schoolers enter kindergarten with good social developmental skills, their ability to learn influences their positive progress throughout school. Schools can then raise their standards and deliver higher quality education," a CFVI pamphlet says.
Kids Count information compiled by CFVI over the past few years indicate quality child care programs provide students with greater readiness for school, reduced need for placement in remedial special education programs, higher rates of high school graduation and a decreased involvement in the criminal justice system, among other things.
"Children who are at risk because of poverty, family disruption or other factors can benefit particularly from such programs," the 2003 Kids Count Data book says.
In terms of meeting the needs of both parents and child care providers, a CFVI study conducted over a three-year period on both national and local levels finds:
-- the training of child care providers and caregivers is important in determining the quality of a particular child care center;
-- there are few professional enrichment opportunities available within the territory for private child care providers; and
-- while many states are developing early care and professional education development systems, programs and licensing requirements within the territory remain "fragmented."

At the Family Connection Center, programs and services for child care providers include training, quality-enhancement grants and the availability of technical assistance and resources to improve child care quality, among other things.
Parents are also able to access information and resources about child development, school readiness and tips on how to choose quality child care.
Since the territory currently has no child care centers accredited by the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC), the professional development center at the Family Connection Center will additionally provide resources, technical assistance and support to a set number of centers in the territory and help them to obtain that accreditation.
The Family Connection Center will also help individuals to obtain Child Development Associate (CDA) credentials, which show that a provider is able to meet the specific needs of children and can work with parents and other adults to develop a child's "physical, social, emotional and intellectual growth."
According to information released by CFVI, it will take about $175,000 annually to operate the Family Connection Center. Financing will be provided by the Family Connection Endowment Fund, federal grant funds, fund-raising initiatives, legislative mandates and user fees and other incentives created to generate revenues.
Back Talk


Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.