Office for Children Awarded Grant

A $234,600 grant has been awarded to the Fairfax County Office for Children by Child Development Resources, Inc. The grant will be used to establish a Virginia Infant and Toddler Specialist Network office at the Office for Children to serve Northern Region I, which encompasses Arlington County, Fairfax County, Loudoun County and the cities of Alexandria, Fairfax and Falls Church.

The grant will allow the Office for Children to help improve the quality of care and education that infants and toddlers receive from area child care programs. Two child care specialists, whose positions will be funded by the grant, will provide professional development to child care center staff and family child care providers. The goal is to strengthen practices and support the growth and development of children from birth to age 3.

"The Infant Toddler Specialist Network will strengthen the competencies of child care center teachers, directors, and family child care providers," explains Anne-Marie Twohie, director of the Office for Children.

In September 2008 the Virginia Department of Social Services contracted with Child Development Resources to establish the Virginia Infant and Toddler Specialist Network. The ITS Network centralizes the oversight, monitoring and evaluation of a community-based, collaborative effort to strengthen the ability of child care programs to deliver high-quality services. Virginia is one of only 18 states to have this type of formalized network focused on its youngest citizens.

The grant runs through June 30, 2010, with two one-year optional renewals, and no local funding match required from local jurisdictions.


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