Immigrant families and early education in New York City

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Tue Jun 10 13:40:35 UTC 2008


Immigrant families and early education in New York City

 CLASP is excited to announce the release of Breaking Down Barriers:
Immigrant Families and Early Childhood Education in New York City, a report
by the Coalition for Asian American Children and Families (CACF). CLASP
provided funding for the research of this report through a small grant as
part of own "Breaking Down Barriers" project. With this funding, CACF
conducted interviews with early education providers working in immigrant
communities and facilitated focus groups and surveys with immigrant families
about access to early care and education in NYC.

 CACF's report relates the unique experiences of Bangladeshi, Chinese,
Dominican, Haitian, Korean, and Russian parents in accessing early care and
education. Parents in the study expressed their preferences for child care
arrangements for their young children, but often the care they were seeking
was inaccessible or unavailable. The report finds that immigrant families
face multiple barriers preventing access to programs in New York City,
including universal pre-kindergarten, Head Start, and child care subsidies.
Barriers include insufficient translation of materials, inadequate outreach
targeted to immigrant communities, lack of affordable child care, and an
ineffective response on the part of the city government to respond to the
needs of immigrant families. For example, the city's Child Care Resource and
Referral Hotline only offers services in English, Spanish and
Chinese—leaving out other language groups.
 CACF makes the following recommendations to improve NYC's early care and
education services for immigrant families, quoted from the report:


   - Language and Culture. Improve language assistance services and increase
   cultural competency of child care program  staff.



   - Outreach. Increase language accessible communication with immigrant
   communities throughout New York City, making them aware of available child
   care programs and services.



   - Professional Development. Ensure that child care providers are
   knowledgeable of  and can address the unique needs and challenges facing
   immigrant communities, families, and children in accessing child care
   services.



   - Funding. Increase funding to city agencies and child care networks so
   that there are enough early childhood education programs and staff to
   address NYC's growing immigrant populations.



   - Data collection. Conduct an early childhood education needs assessment
   of NYC's immigrant communities and use data to improve programs, increase
   outreach, and implement appropriate language assistance services.

 http://childcareandearlyed.clasp.org/2008/06/immigrant-famil.html
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