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Investing in Early Educators
Stipend Program

▪ A project of the Child Care Planning Committee of the County of Los Angeles, administered by the Office of Child Care with funding from the California Department of Education ▪

California State Budget 2010-11 – Potential Impact on Cycle 12

Presupuesto del Estado de California 2010-11 – Posible Impacto al Ciclo 12

Overview of the Stipend Program

Schedule and Instructions for Cycle 12

Appeals Process

Notification of Address and Name Changes

California State Budget 2010-11 – Potential Impact on Cycle 12

Implementation of the Investing in Early Educators Program – Cycle 12 is dependent on the availability of funds from the California Department of Education/Child Development Division (CDE/CDD), which are allocated each year in the State Budget signed by the Governor.  On October 8, 2010, Governor Schwarzenegger signed the 2010-11 State Budget bill.  The budget contains significant cuts to child care and development programs, including a reduction of in funding for Child Care Recruitment and Retention Programs.  While the Office of Child Care will receive funds from the CDE/CDD to administer the Investing in Early Educators Program, it will be less than previous years.  As a result, changes will be made to the program and may include elements of the following:

  • Elimination of graduation stipends for persons earning a Master, or Doctorate degree stipend during the stipend cycle; continue awarding additional stipends to persons earning Associate and Bachelor degrees.

  • Reduce amounts of stipends for earned semester units; maintain number of units required for a stipend at three semester units (4.5 quarter units) or six semester units (nine quarter units).

  • Award fewer stipends based on a priority system (yet to be determined).

  • Disqualify incomplete applications (Note:  the instructions indicate that only complete applications will be fully reviewed.  However, our practice has been to contact applicants with missing information with an opportunity to provide it.  If funding is reduced, incomplete applications may automatically be disqualified.)

Preparing for Cycle 12 in an Uncertain Budget Climate
Information about funding for the Investing in Early Educators Program will be posted to this Web page as it becomes available.  In the meantime, the Office of Child Care and the Child Care Planning Committee encourage persons working in child care and development programs to continue your education.  If you have applied to participate in Cycle 12, qualifying classes should be completed during the Spring, Summer, and/or Fall semesters of 2010.

OVERVIEW OF THE STIPEND PROGRAM

Introduction
The Investing in Early Educators Stipend Program, funded by the California Department of Education/Child Development Division (CDE/CDD) and developed by the County of Los Angeles Child Care Planning Committee, is designed to increase the retention and academic preparedness of early educators working in child development programs – centers and family child care homes – in which most of the children are subsidized by the State.  Stipends are made available to educators completing college coursework that informs their work with children and families, and/or contributes towards a degree in child development or a closely related field. Click here to learning more about the employment criteria, educational requirements, eligible coursework and application process.

Employment Criteria
Teachers must meet the following eligibility criteria to apply for a stipend:

  1. Work in a CDE/CDD-contracted child development center or participate in a CDE/CDD-contracted Family Child Care Home Education Network, OR

    Work in a licensed center or family child care home in which the majority (51% or more) of the children receive a child care subsidy from the CDE/CDD at the time the application is submitted; AND

  2. Work directly teaching children as a teacher, teacher/director (those with dual roles), teacher aide/assistant, or substitute in the classroom on a consistent and continual basis at least 15 to 20 hours per week depending on program type and job title; AND

  3. If working in a center, maintain employment at any eligible child development program located in Los Angeles County for at least one year during the Stipend Program cycle, which typically runs from July 1st through June 30th.

    For family child care homes, have been licensed and operating for one year in Los Angeles County or been employed in a family child care home located in Los Angeles County for one year during the Stipend Program cycle.

  4. Hold a Child Development Permit awarded by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC).  An applicant with a pending Child Development Permit at the time of verification will not be eligible for a stipend.
Note:  If you work in a Los Angeles Universal Preschool (LAUP) classroom only, you may be eligible for their Professional Growth Plan (PGP) Stipend Program.  Visit www.laup.net and click on Professional Growth Opportunities for more information.

Educational Requirements
Depending on the availability of CDE/CDD funds, stipends will be awarded based on the following criteria: 

  1. Completion of at least three semester units (4.5 quarter units); or

  2. Completion of six (6) semester units (9 quarter units) maximum.

  3. Teachers earning an Associate, Bachelor or Master Degree in child development may qualify for an additional stipend if the participant graduates during the Stipend Program cycle.  (See California State Budget 2010-11 – Potential Impact on Cycle 12 for possible changes in the awarding of stipends to students earning their Master Degrees during the Stipend Cycle.)
Attention Bachelor degree candidates:  For teachers taking one final class required to graduate with a BA/BS degree in child development or a closely related field, you may qualify for an additional graduation stipend with the coursework stipend as long as the completed class is the equivalent of at least three (3) quarter units.  The units and the degree must be earned during the Stipend Program cycle.

For applicants who do not have a degree in child development, eligible coursework must lead to a degree in child development at an accredited community college, college, or university and be completed during the Stipend Program cycle - generally in the spring, summer, or fall semesters.  For applicants who hold a degree in child development, eligible coursework must relate directly to your work with children and families.  All applicants must pass their class(es) with a grade of “C” or better.  Copies of official transcripts from accredited educational institutions are required to verify successful completion of the coursework. 

Eligible Coursework
All courses must be unit-bearing and fulfill the requirements for a degree in child development.  Extension courses are not eligible unless the applicant has a Bachelor degree (BA/BS) or higher.

Eligible coursework is limited to the following five categories:

  1. If you are not proficient in English, you may take English-as-a-Second-Language (ESL) classes at a community college if directed to do so by your college.  This option is intended for applicants needing to improve their English language skills in order to enroll in college classes toward earning a degree in child development.

  2. If you do not have a child development permit issued by the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing (CTC), you should take required child development classes, or the required general education courses (for teacher permit level or higher).  If you already have a permit, you may take classes needed to upgrade or renew your permit.

  3. Note:  If you do not have a permit, contact CTC by visiting their Web site at www.ctc.ca.gov or contact the child development department at your community college.  Click on “Credentialing”, then “Child Development Permits” and following the instructions for obtaining or upgrading your permit.  Community colleges can often process permit applications more quickly than the CTC.  In addition, the Child Development Training Consortium offers support to eligible person applying for, renewing, or upgrading their permits; more information is available at www.childdevelopment.org.

    You will need a valid permit to qualify for a stipend at the time of verification; it takes approximately nine months or more for your permit to be issued.  A pending permit will not be accepted at the time of verification.


  4. If you do NOT have an Associate degree (AA/AS), you can take child development, English, math or general education classes; or prerequisites to classes that are transferable for a degree in child development.  Check with an advisor at your college or university before enrolling in a class if you are not sure it is a prerequisite or transferable class.

  5. If you have an AA/AS or are working towards a Bachelor Degree (BA/BS), you should take classes that are transferable and are counted as credit toward a four-year college or university degree; or classes at a four-year college or university that count towards a degree.  Acceptable degrees include Early Childhood Education, Early Special Education, Child Psychology, and Child Development.

  6. If you have a BA/BS or higher, you should take college or university classes that are directly related to your work with children and families in a child development program.  Sample topics include:  the child with special needs, diversity, dual language learners, parent relations, adult supervision, program evaluation, and advanced child development.  Unit bearing extension or continuing education courses can be counted as eligible only for individuals who already hold a BA/BS or higher.

If you have any questions regarding which classes would make you eligible for a stipend, please contact the Office of Child Care by e-mail at sib_occ@ceo.lacounty.gov or call the Investing in Early Educators Stipend Program at (213) 974-4674.

Application Process
Applying to the Stipend Programis a two-part process:

  1. Application:  determines that the eligibility criteria have been met.  Applications with supporting documents are generally due in the fall.
  1. Verification:  verifies that the applicant has met the educational requirements, holds a Child Development permit, and continues to meet the employment criteria.  Verification forms with supporting documents are generally due by late winter/early spring.

Stipend Amounts
Stipend amounts vary depending on the amount of available CDE/CDD funding and the number of successful applicants.  Teachers earning an Associate of Arts, Bachelor of Arts or Master degree may qualify for an additional stipend if they also graduate during the Stipend Program cycle, typically in January or June.  (See California State Budget 2010-11 – Potential Impact on Cycle 12 for possible changes in grant amounts and the awarding of stipends to students earning their Master Degrees during the Stipend Cycle.)

More Information
Instructions and applications to the Stipend Program are typically posted in the summer on this Web site.  Applications with instructions may also be requested by contacting the Office of Child Care, Investing in Early Educators Program at (213) 974-4674.

SCHEDULE AND INSTRUCTIONS FOR CYCLE 12

Applications are no longer being accepted for Cycle 12

Applicants are encouraged to download and review the instructions (see link below) for the educational requirements, important dates and future deadlines.  The appeals process, if appropriate, is also outlined in the instructions.

Schedule for Stipend Program – Cycle 12

Stipend Program Cycle 12 applications posted on the Web site at  http://childcare.lacounty.gov

August 2010

Applications with supporting documents due:

Mail in:  Thursday, October 21, 2010 (postmarked)
Walk in:  Thursday, October 28, 2010

Application Disqualification Letters mailed by:

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Appeal Letters for Application Disqualification due:

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Verification Forms mailed to eligible applicants by:

Friday, February 4, 2011

Verification Forms with supporting documents due:

Mail in:  Thursday, March 3, 2011 (postmarked)
Walk in:  Thursday, March 10, 2011

Verification Disqualification Letters mailed by:

Friday, May 6, 2011

Appeal Letters for Verification Disqualification due:

Friday, May 20, 2011

Stipends sent to qualifying applicants:

July/August 2011

Appeal Letters for Incorrect Stipend Amounts

Posted with the Stipend Check

Instructions for Cycle 12 are available for download from the following links:

Cycle 13A:  For persons working in child development centers

Cycle 13B:  For persons working in family child care homes
English
Chinese
Spanish

To download the materials, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader, which is available as a plug-in on most browsers.  Read the instructions on how to install Adobe Acrobat Reader.

APPEALS PROCESS

The Office of Child Care has instituted an appeals process for applicants who believe that they were disqualified from the Stipend Program in error or, if upon receiving their stipend, believe that there is an error in payment.  Disqualified applicants may submit a letter of appeal in writing.

For letters of appeal regarding incorrect payment:  do not cash or deposit the check; rather hold it until the matter is resolved. 

An appeal is not the time to submit new information or supporting documents that were not included with the application or verification forms by the respective due dates.  Rather, it is an opportunity to prove that the application or verification was complete, included the required supporting documents, was submitted by the due date, and the applicant metthe eligibility criteria based on their original application.

The letter of appeal must include the following information:

  • Date the appeal letter is written
  • Applicant’s full name and social security number (SSN) as written on the application
  • Reference to the reason for disqualification as written in the letter received from the Office of Child Care
  • A brief description of why the applicant thinks the decision to disqualify the application is incorrect
  • A telephone number for contacting the applicant, as needed
  • A copy of the application and supporting documents as submitted by the due date
  • A copy of the receipt provided when the application was submitted in person or a copy of the certified mail receipt

To download a sample letter of appeal, click on the link below.  The sample letter of appeal is provided to help guide you as you create your own letter.

Sample Letter of Appeal

Applicants should make a copy of the letter of appeal and supporting documents for their records.The schedule for submitting letters of appeal are listed in the Schedule for Stipend Program.  Letters of appeal with supporting documents are to be submitted by U.S. Mail to:

Investing in Early Educators Stipend Program – Cycle 12
Office of Child Care, SIB/CEO
County of Los Angeles
222 South Hill Street, 5th Floor
Los Angeles, CA  90012

The Office of Child Care management team reviews appeals, including review of the original application. Decisions to grant or not grant the appeal, based on whether the applicant met the application requirements and deadlines, are made within two (2) weeks of receipt of the letter of appeal.  The applicant will be notified of the decision by U.S. mail.  ALL DECISIONS ARE FINAL.

NOTIFICATION OF ADDRESS AND NAME CHANGES

Stipend Program participants must notify the Office of Child Care if there has been a change in your name and/or address by submitting certain documents as follows:

** Print “Name Change” in the upper right hand corner of the W-9 Form

  • Address change:  Complete and submit the following forms:

** Print “Name Change” in the upper right hand corner of the W-9 Form

You may also request that the forms be sent to you by calling (213) 974-4674. 

The forms may be sent to the Office of Child Care Investing in Early Educators Stipend Program by fax to (213) 217-5106.  Faxes are accepted only during regular business hours, which are Monday through Friday, 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.  To protect your security, please notify the Stipend Program staff at (213) 974-4674 to let them know that you are sending the document by fax.

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Investing in Early Educators Program
Office of Child Care
Service Integration Branch/Chief Executive Office
222 South Hill Street, 5th Floor
Los Angeles, CA  90012
(213) 974-4674 Telephone • (213) 217-5106 Facsimile

Parking is available at the public parking lot just south and adjacent to the building for $9.00 or across the street for $2.75 for every 15 minutes for a maximum of $7.00.  Unfortunately, we do not validate parking.  As an alternative, our office is approximately 1½ block south from the Metro Red Line Civic Center stop (follow exit to Hill Street).

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