The end of the year is approaching fast, bringing many things to the early care and education community, from celebrations to brighten the darkest days, and time off with family, to preparing for the best way to advocate for needed resources in our city, county, and state as elected leaders develop their budgets.
The SFCCPA supports the San Francisco’s Child Care Planning and Advisory Council (CPAC) decision to put forward a substantial local budget ask, based on a realistic assessment of the cost to provide early care and education to both low- and middle-income families. We further support the decision to prioritize educator compensation, assessing ECE teacher compensation at levels that achieve parity with SFUSD TK-12 educators, and move all ECE teachers to self-sufficiency wages. This truly recognizes that a stable, well-compensated workforce is the keystone of a quality system.
Real faces and stories of San Francisco educators and families are key to making the change we need. The SFCCPA invites you to share your story and participate in any and all ways you can – including the upcoming action planning meetings. See “What Story Could You Share?” and SFCCPA events highlighted below.
I have also included The Hechinger Report article, How sexism and old-fashioned ideals hurt child care workers to inspire your story. The article recognizes “that a long tradition of sexism, racism, and the low value placed on early childhood education and care-a gargantuan task that mothers have been expected to do for free throughout much of history-contribute to the low expectations and low compensation afforded the women who provide this service to other people’s children from their homes.” Then concludes that talking of providers now “as children’s first, and arguably most important, teachers outside of their own homes.” Your stories will be an important part of doing just this.
As part of the ECE community, we have been encouraged by the late Mayor Lee’s expressed commitment to build an expanded ECE system that serves both low- and middle-income families. Last week was a difficult one, and an important one for each of us to pause and value the path we are on, and those on it with us. My heart is with Mayor Lee’s wife and daughters. I look forward to working with community and elected leaders through this transition, to carry forth a vision of human rights, social justice, diversity, and a commitment to young children and families.