It was recently announced that the Department of Defense would be expanding the Military Child Care in Your Neighborhood-PLUS (MCCYN-PLUS) program to increase access to quality child care providers in locations with high demand, including Nebraska! The MCCYN-PLUS initiative increases access to quality early care and education programs for military families and gives eligible providers the opportunity to expand their businesses to include military families. Learn more.
In July, we celebrated the ninth anniversary of Step Up to Quality! We have so much to celebrate: more than 700 providers who are participating in our program, more than 41,000 children in Nebraska who have been educated by a Step Up to Quality-rated provider, and the launch of Step Up to Quality 2.0 earlier this year. To see more about our achievements and results over the past year, please read our annual report.
We love working with the many early childhood organizations and initiatives across Nebraska. These partnerships are important to us as we all work to improve the overall quality of care for our youngest residents. To help our partners explain all the benefits that Step Up to Quality offers to child care providers, we created a digital toolkit of resources and materials.
The School Readiness Tax Credit for Nebraska’s child care programs and their staff has been reinstated for the 2024 tax year, making this the perfect time to enroll in Step Up to Quality if you aren’t already participating. Stay tuned as we will be sharing more information on how Nebraska’s child care programs and the early childhood workforce can apply for these tax credits next year. We understand that you may have questions, and are working to provide detailed timelines, eligibility requirements, and application instructions.
We are proud to unveil our first-ever children’s book! This custom book, called Stepping into Quality, was mailed out to the more than 700 providers enrolled in our program and is designed to help make the first day of child care a happy memory. We’ve created some digital downloads you can use on your social media to mark the occasion.
If you’re a child care provider not yet participating in Step Up to Quality, it’s not too late to join and receive a copy of our book! Simply enroll on our website, and we’ll send you a copy soon after.