Just Say No to Judgment: How Judging Parents Actually Leads to Worse, Not Better, Outcomes for Kids


Almost all parents feel judged, almost all the time. Our Tuning In survey showed that nearly 9 in 10 parents across the board feel judged (90% moms and 85% dads), and almost half say they feel judged all the time or nearly all the time (46% moms; 45% dads).

Read the full article here: https://www.zerotothree.org/resources/1716-just-say-no-to-judgment-how-judging-parents-actually-leads-to-worse-not-better-outcomes-for-kids

How Data Helped Head Start Centers Tackle a 'No Show' Problem


From the article:

"What do you do when you build a preschool class—but many of the children never show up?

That's what happened at the Head Start program overseen by the Community Action Project of Tulsa in Oklahoma, or CAP Tulsa for short. In September 2016, 135 preschoolers—fully 20 percent of the program's Head Start population—never appeared at the start of the school year, even though their parents had enrolled them.

CAP Tulsa, as it has often done in the past, turned to data both to figure out the problem and devise a solution. And in doing so, it provided an example of how all of Head Start's 1,600 grantees are now expected to infuse data into their decisionmaking and continuous-improvement processes."

Read the rest of the article.


Stressed Kids’ Brains Mature Faster


A new study found that when children are exposed to stress during childhood, their brains mature faster.

"Researchers first examined one-year-old children and their parents in 1998. Over 20 years researchers observed the children's playtime sessions, interactions with parents, friends and classmates, along with other factors. They also conducted MRI scans on the children.

With this information, the researchers were able to observe how stress affects the natural pruning process of the brain. Synaptic pruning removes connections in the brain that are no longer needed. This helps the brain function more efficiently as people age and learn new complex information.

According to a press release from the university, the researchers examined two origins of stress in two different life phases: negative life events and negative social influences at ages 0 to 5 and 14 to 17. They then compared the amount of stress with the synaptic pruning process in different areas of the brain that are responsible for functioning in social and emotional situations and that are especially vulnerable to stress."

Help #ProtectSNAP

This week the House of Representatives will vote on legislation to reauthorize the Farm Bill. (for more, see this article: https://www.rollcall.com/…/farm-bill-gets-two-days-house-ru… )
The House proposal threatens deep cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program and would impose unnecessarily strict work requirements on SNAP participants. Other important public health provisions are also in jeopardy, such as key conservation programs and laws that protect the public from the harmful effects of pesticides. Also, several amendments are expected to be introduced that will weaken school meal regulations. Here is a link to a nice PDF infographic fact sheet on SNAP in Kansas: 
#HandsOffSNAP #ProtectSNAP #SNAPWorks

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CCDF Comment Period Information

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The Child Care and Development Fund State Plan update is available at the link below (DCF website) for public comment. There will be public comment hearing in Topeka June 6th.  Comments may also be emailed by June 11th to ccdfstateplan@ks.gov




Two items highlighted by KAC regarding the new state plan are below.

First, the state should consider using child care funding to subsidize the cost of fingerprint-based background checks for providers. These new fingerprint-based checks are an important step to reduce the likelihood of abuse and neglect of children in child care, and Kansas can support providers by offsetting the additional cost of these new requirements.


·  Second, Kansas should do more to help families afford child care. The child care assistance program helps families afford the cost of child care tuition so that parents can work while children are in safe early learning settings. The number of children participating in the program fell by more than half in the last decade; child care assistance served fewer than 9,000 Kansas children in March 2018. 

Proposed Farm Bill Puts Kansas Families at Risk of Increased Hunger


Excerpt from the article:

"The federal Farm Bill proposal recently passed by the House Agriculture Committee would increase hunger throughout Kansas and the nation through its many changes to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). It also forces other states to replicate some of Kansas’ failed policies on SNAP and other poverty-reduction programs, based on flawed studies about Kansas’ experience with similar proposals."