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Family agency announces $600 supplements for childcare workers

Responding to the severe shortage of daycare workers, the Children & Family Resource Center announced this week that it will provide education-based salary supplements to low-paid teachers, directors and family child care educators working with children ages birth to 5 years old. 

The center's Early Childhood Supplement Program program is designed to increase retention, education and compensation for early childhood providers in Henderson County.

Those eligible for the supplement include any child care professional earning below $23/hour. The supplement recipient must also work with children ages birth to 5 at least 10 hours per week in a licensed child care program in Henderson County and be enrolled in at least 1 class of eligible coursework. Eligible participants will receive $600 a year, pending renewal every 6 months. Payments will be disbursed twice a year, in July and January.

Interested child care professionals must complete an application found here and provide verification of their current employment in a participating child care program, current wages and education earned, as verified by an official transcript. Interested professionals may only participate in one salary supplement initiative for Early Educators. WAGE$ participants are not eligible to participate in Children and Family Resource Center’s Early Childhood Supplement Program.

The first supplements will be issued in July 2023, based on the period between Jan. 1 and June 30 of this year. An installment will be issued after each period, based on the education level and the work schedule of the recipient over the six-month period completed. No portion of the award will be issued if the participant leaves the child care program prior to completing the entire six-month commitment period.

“Child care providers have one of the most difficult jobs and we know centers struggling to find staff so they can keep classrooms open and serve the children of our community," Children & Family Resource Center Executive Director Jamie Wiener said. "We are hopeful that this supplement will encourage more teachers to join the field, stay in the field and continue their education so they can be that caring adult that the kids in their care need every day,”

Funding for the supplements was made possible by a grant from the Dogwood Health Trust Early Education Workforce Grant awarded in January of this year. All supplements are contingent on available funds. The Children and Family Resource Center anticipates funding to go through June 30, 2027.