Child care providers in Washington are required to meet some of the highest standards in the country, but many have not seen raises above minimum wage in almost 30 years. Washington does not have enough existing care to meet the needs of families, with 65% of families living in child care deserts. When so many families already struggle to find care, we can't afford to create additional burdens on these essential educators!
HB 2556 would create flexibility for providers to meet the new Early Childhood Education minimum education requirement for licensing through a community based training option. These training sessions would be low cost, offered in multiple languages, and available in the communities where providers live and work, allowing a greater diversity of providers to demonstrate their skills and knowledge and meet the education requirements for licensure. The bill would also reset implementation of the education requirements to 2026, giving providers time to recruit, retain, and train qualified staff to meet these new requirements.
Tell Senate committee members today why you support this bill and help ensure that child care providers have the resources and flexibility they need to meet new requirements and continue providing high quality care for Washington children and families.