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Description: Your State Advocacy Contacts | Update on Gubernatorial Elections | From the 2014 Legislative Sessions | Childhood Immunizations

Public Policy Notes S outhe r n E a r ly C hild hood As s o ci a tio n Just Ask Us Starting with the Candidates early childhood education. All of these goals are achievable however there are constraints on the activities for non-profit organizations and advocates must use caution. You are expressly prohibited from endorsing a candidate so you must be careful about how you design your advocacy efforts. ing benefits 1) The state association can position itself as the go to expert in the field of early childhood education for existing and potential office holders. 2) The state association can gain visibility both statewide and locally helping to enhance member retention and recruitment. 3) The state association can be viewed as a resource for members in helping them to determine which candidate best represents their positions and goals for To help guide you through the legal requirements for advocacy with candidates SECA developed this resource Campaign August 2014 Public Policy Notes Inside this issue Your State 2 Advocacy Contacts Update on Gubernatorial Elections 2 From the 2014 3 Legislative Sessions Childhood Immunizations 4 This month SECA released a series of resources to state affiliate public policy chairs that are designed to support advocacy efforts prior to the 2014 mid-term elections. We chose to release the initial materials for the Just Ask Us campaign this month because the timing couldn t be better. Most of our states have completed primaries and the final candidates for office are determined for the fall election. Candidates are actively seeking support and may be more inclined to meet with organizations and groups. Acting now could provide the follow- 2014 Educating the Candidates. The guide is available on the SECA website and contains information about what you can and cannot do. Go to page 2 of this newsletter to find out who is designated as the advocacy contact in your state. Your State Advocacy Contacts If you d like to become involved in helping your state affiliate to get the word out please get in touch with your state affiliate public policy contact. He or she can coordinate any efforts in your state and make sure that all of the advocates are on the same page . Alabama Cynthia Biegler cbiegler Arkansas Jamie Morrison Ward Jamie Florida Gege Kreischer AKreisc Georgia Crystal Rhodes or Lisa Polk crystal lisa.polk Kentucky April Trent April.trent Louisiana Cathy Martin Cathy.Martin Mississippi Lydia Bethay lbethay Oklahoma Retta Seger rseger South Carolina Herman Knopf hknopf Tennessee Phil Acord Rhonda Laird and Diane Neighbors ppasb4 Rhonda.n.laird diane.neighbors Texas Aaron Carrara Aaron.Carrara Virginia Pat Victorson mvictors West Virginia Chuck Loudin cdc Let s be a strong voice on behalf of children in the South Update on 2014 Gubernatorial Elections Safe Incumbents Bentley AL Fallin OK Haslam TN Source Sabato s Crystal Ball http crystalball 2014-governor. Retrieved 8 19 2014. As of August 8th these were the predictions from the Center. Safe Republican Alabama Texas Oklahoma and Tennessee Leaning Republican Georgia and South Carolina From Democrat to Republican Arkansas Toss-up Florida Incumbents Likely to Win Haley SC and Deal GA According to Larry Sabato political guru of the University of Virginia Center for Politics there may be some changes in the party that occupies the Governor s office in SECA states. Public Policy Notes Arkansas may change from Democrat to Republican. Florida with incumbent Rick Scott and former Governor Charlie Crist is anybody s guess From the 2014 State Legislative Sessions In Louisiana HCR 61 requires the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education to develop and recommend a statewide funding model to support quality early childhood care and education. Act 134 adds child care expenses incurred during a parent s job training or education to the basic child support obligation. Act 34 extends the Montessori program model into the high school age. Act 787 enacts the Improving Access to Child Care for Homeless Louisiana Families Act. Act 868 transfers the duties of center- and home-based child care licensing oversight and administration including administration of the federal Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) to the Louisiana Department of Education (DOE). Act 717 establishes a local early learning enrollment coordination system. Act 498 allows early childhood programs to act as public procurement units and engage in cooperative purchasing. Act 780 allows school districts to receive public or private donations as scholarships for children enrolled in the LA 4 Early Childhood Program. Act requires the State Department of Education to allocate state funds to allow every eligible four-year-old to attend the LA 4 Early Childhood Program. In Florida the state laboratory may now release the results of newborn hearing and metabolic screening. Georgia adopted a resolution that recognizes October 610 2014 as Georgia Pre-K Week. A resolution in Kentucky honors Volume 7 Issue 8 the Blueprint for Kentucky s Children and declares January 16 2014 as Children s Advocacy Day in the Commonwealth. Act 536 in Mississippi authorizes the Mississippi Department of Education to establish and implement a statewide mandatory Kindergarten Readiness Assessment. North Carolina Act 2014-49 revises and clarifies the special education scholarships for children with disabilities and exempts certain schools that do not receive NC Pre-K or child care subsidy funding from child care licensure requirements. Act 33 in Oklahoma sunsets the tax credit for eligible child care provider expenses in January 2017. In South Carolina Act 284 implements a comprehensive pre-K through 12th grades reading proficiency plan. Act 287 reauthorizes the South Carolina First Steps to School Readiness through 2016. Act 155 makes changes regarding data collection of aggregated developmental assessment data. Act 295 requires child care programs to obtain parental permission to administer medication to children and requires the Department of Social Services to make unannounced inspections and investigations of center- and home-based child care facilities. Tennessee Act 85 changes the date that four-year-olds are allowed to enroll in pre-K. Act 513 extends the Child Care Advisory Council to June 2019. Act 968 enacts the Tennessee Community Schools Act. Act 972 prioritizes children of killed or missing U.S. military personnel for state preschool or child care center enrollment. Act 681 prohibits the destruction of undeliverable books from the Imagination Library program. Virginia SJR 54 requests a statewide study for a tieredreimbursement subsidy program for child-care providers. Act 128 convenes a work group to review laws and regulations governing criminal history background checks for child care providers. Act 129 prohibits child care centers from allowing employees or volunteers to start working until their criminal history records have been received. Act 379 establishes a work group to make recommendations to implement national fingerprint-based criminal history background checks for all child care providers. Act 771 allows local governments to approve zoning permits for home-based child care facilities. In West Virginia Act 109 allows DHHR to promulgate legislative rules for child care licensing. Act 47 requires that students in pre-K through 8th grades are included in the WV 21st Century Strategic Technology Learning Plan. Act 50 requires the State Board of Education to promulgate rules to develop a comprehensive systemic approach to close the reading achievement gap by third grade by ensuring quality early learning experiences. For complete information on failed and enacted bills go to http research hum an-services child-care-and-earlyeducation-legislation-databas.aspx Page 3 Southern Early Childhood Association 1123 S. University Ste 255 Little Rock AR 72204 Phone 800-305-SECA Fax 501-227-5297 E-mail info How to Use Public Policy Notes If you re interested in advocacy one of the most effective tools that you can have is access to information. This newsletter is provided as a service to locate and share information that we think will be helpful to you in your work at the state level and to keep you updated on what s happening in public policy. You ll find information that Compares your state to other SECA states--how you re doing what issues you have in common what the hot topics are in your states. Brings the national scene to your fingertips and gives you a perspective on how national events might impact you...You ll also receive information about where to find additional information. We hope you ll find it helpful. Children need you to be their voice in your community and state. This monthly newsletter is produced by Glenda Bean SECA Executive Director. SECA strives to provide non-partisan and non-biased information A Voice for Southern Children that is of interest to early childhood educators. Sign up at http policy_newsletter_sign.php to receive notice of its availability each month. School s Starting Immunization Requirements for Children All 50 states have immunization requirements for both schools and child care but states vary on what leeway parents have to opt-out of these requirements. According to the Centers for Disease Control there are 16 diseases that can be prevented with vaccinations. Many parents are concerned about the potential side effects of these immunizations and choose to opt-out for religious medical or personal reasons. Following is a list of exemptions allowed in the SECA states. Exemptions by State Alabama Medical & Religious Arkansas Medical Religious &Personal Florida Medical & Religious Georgia Medical & Religious Kentucky Medical & Religious Louisiana Medical & Personal Mississippi Medical Oklahoma Medical Religious & Personal South Carolina Medical & Religious Tennessee Medical & Religious Texas Medical Religious & Personal Virginia Medical & Religious West Virginia Medical Source State Information Immunization Action Coalition http . Retrieved 8 19 2014. If you d like to provide information to parents the CDC has a web page that is devoted to explaining immunizations and why they are important. http vaccines p arents record-reqs childcareschool.html The Association of State & Territorial Health Officials includes information on state legislative activity in regard to immunizations. Go to http Programs Immunization State-Immunization-Legis