Update on Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Facility Grants
Across all five waves of the Race to the Top Early Learning Challenge Facility Grants program, LISC’s Rhode Island Child Care and Early Learning Facilities Fund (RICCELFF) received more than $7.1 million in requests for funding from 136 businesses and organizations. Nearly all of the requests were worthy and clearly demonstrated the enormous need that exists for investment in early learning facilities. During Waves 1-5 we were able to award and distribute a total of $1.7 million, helping 81 centers across the state eliminate licensing variance issues, correct health and safety concerns and implement modest changes that support their ability to offer quality programming. It has been so exciting to see the progress that’s been made with these grants! We have also continued to advocate for resources that would allow additional projects to be funded, helping to improve space for even more of the state’s most vulnerable young children in centers that demonstrate a strong commitment to quality improvement.
It gives us great pleasure to report that we were successful in obtaining additional funding from both the Rhode Island Department of Education (RIDE) and the Department of Human Services (DHS) so that additional requests could be funded. Awardees were selected from the Waves 1-5 applicant pool utilizing our previously ranked list of very worthwhile and shovel ready projects. Projects had been ranked based on the funding’s priority criteria. Awards have been made for an additional $915,000, benefitting another 31 businesses and organizations state-wide. Centers receiving awards have been notified and we are excited to see these projects get off the ground! Unfortunately, this leaves $4.5 million in requests that we are still not able to fund at this time, but please know that we will continue to advocate for the importance of investment in facilities.
In This Issue
Slow and Steady Wins the Race – the Benefits of Project Phasing
Get Your Space Ready for the New School Year
Appropriate Weather Conditions for Taking Children Outside
Early Learners Need Quality Facilities Tailored to Their Needs – Sharing Success from Across the Nation