COVID-19 Resources

As we progress through this extraordinary time, we are here to serve as a resource for PennAEYC members and the early care and education community. Please know we are trying to share anything coming out of the government that could be helpful, recognizing each program or concept may not help everyone.

NAEYC COVID-19 Advocacy and Resources for Early Care and Education Providers

NAEYC Survey July 2021: Progress and Peril: Child Care at a Crossroads   


State Survey Data: Child Care at a Time of Progress and Peril August 2021 

NAEYC Statement – Child Care is Essential and Needs Emergency Support to Survive  (March 15, 2020)

NAEYC Child Care is Essential and Needs Emergency Support to Survive page – highlights resources, actions and advocacy opportunities in response to the coronavirus pandemic

NAEYC Coping with COVID-19 – online COVID-19 resources from NAEYC and a few national health and educational organizations

 NAEYC Pandemic Surveys – findings from NAEYC surveys of child care providers, including PA proviers

Federal and State COVID-19 Relief Funding for Early Learning Programs

CARES Act

The federal CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act) was a $2.2 trillion economic stimulus that included $3.9 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Program and $750 million for Head Start – March 27, 2020

From the $3.9 billion in CCDBG, $106 million in CCDBG came to PA for child care:

  • DHS OCDEL allocated $51 million for eligible, certified child care providers – May 21, 2020
  • DHS OCDEL allocated $53 million for eligible, certified child care providers – July 6, 2020

From the discretionary CARES Act funds, $125 million was allocated by the General Assembly and Governor for early learning and pre-k – May 28, 2020:

  • $116 million for child care;
  • $7 million for Pre-K Counts; and
  • $2 million for Head Start Supplemental Assistance Program

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act

The Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act of 2021 included $303 million in support for child care – December 27, 2020:

  • $140.7 million to support child care providers 
  • $64.6 million to help child care providers continue to account for increased costs in order to operate safely
  • $87.17 million to support increased, regionalized base payment rates for child care providers participating in subsidized child care. 
  • $3 million to expand the number of child care professionals who can receive pandemic relief awards to an additional 5,000 people

The American Rescue Plan

The American Rescue Plan includes approximately $1.18 billion for PA in support for child care:

  • $455 million in expanded child care assistance
  • $728 million in child care stabilization funds

Current Advocacy Opportunities – Get current advocacy efforts details by joining both the Pre-K for PA, Start Strong PA and Childhood Begins at Home issue campaigns. We urge you to take action today to help #SaveChildCare by clicking this link.

American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Stabilization Grants

OCDEL is making American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) Stabilization Grants available to eligible child care providers in September. These grants and the required reporting will be completed in the Professional Development (PD) Registry. In order to apply, all child care providers need to get ready.

Create A PD Registry Account Directors/Owners/Administrators/Fiscal Staff*: Make sure you have an account created in the PD Registry. The person completing the application for your facility must have an account in the PD Registry to apply. Figure out who this key staff is now! If you have an account, you do not need to create a new one. Click here to learn how to create an account. 

Claim Your Organization – Directors/Owners/Administrators/Fiscal Staff*: Make sure you have claimed your organization in the PD Registry. The person who plans to complete the application must claim your organization as an administrator of the facility, If you have already claimed your organization, you do not need to claim it again. Click here to learn how to claim your organization.

*Each facility can have multiple administrators but only one person can apply for ARPA Stabilization Grant funds on behalf of the program. 

Send questions about creating an account and claiming your organization in the PD Registry to registry@pakeys.org

Once you are ready, updates and information will be shared via the PA Early Ed News Special Announcements, the weekly ECE Recap and Certification Announcements. Check your email or see announcements here over the next few weeks for next steps and to learn more about eligibility requirements; what information you will need for your application; how you can use the funds; and what you will be required to report on after you receive the funds.  

Is your certified program eligible? Eligibility for the Stabilization Grants has been established in ARPA, by the federal Office of Child Care (OCC) and Pennsylvania’s 2021-22 Fiscal Code (HB 1348). To qualify, certified child care providers must:

  1. Have a regular or provisional Certificate of Compliance on or before March 11, 2021;
  2. At the time of application, be either open and available to provide child care or be in a temporarily closed status due to a COVID-19 pandemic related reason; Providers in a temporarily closed status must plan to reopen by Sept. 30, 2021; and
  3. At the time of application, a providers’ Certificate of Compliance cannot be in the Revocation or Refuse to Renew status with the OCDEL Bureau of Certification Services.

Note: Some relative Child Care Works (CCW) providers may also be eligible for an ARPA Stabilization Grant. Information about the relative provider eligibility and application process will be shared directly with those providers.

Questions? Send questions about creating an account and claiming your organization in the PD Registry to registry@pakeys.org. Please include your program’s MPI number. Send questions about eligibility for the Stabilization Grant to your ELRC. Also, see past and upcoming Announcements regarding OCDEL ARPA Stabilization Grants here.

Vaccine Information

The Janssen, Johnson & Johnson (J&J) COVID-19 Vaccine Request survey is closed. Providers and eligible individuals that did not sign up in this initiative are able to schedule independently through local participating pharmacies or their health care provider.

Office of Child Development and Early Learning (OCDEL) Announcements and Information

COVID-19 Relief Funding for Early Learning Programs

Phased-in Reopening Resources

Additional Announcements, FAQs and Waiver details

Expired Policies

A list of the regulations suspended in whole or in part and their current status is available on the Department of Human Services (DHS) website here. Some other regulations have been reinstated and those available on the DHS website

OCDEL, Bureau of Certification, in collaboration with the Pennsylvania Key, has recorded webinars on the CDC guidance for child care providers including:   

*OCDEL has noted that documents will be updated and re-released on a recurring basis as new information becomes available. 

General Resources

We encourage you to continue to consult these resources for updates on COVID-19, information on staying healthy, and updates on the situation in Pennsylvania.

We also encourage you to visit www.sharedsourcepa.org for helpful resources that you can use with families and staff to reduce the level of anxiety, communicate what is known to be most appropriate health, hygiene and safety practices, as well as interim guidance for child care businesses.

Professional Development for Providers 

PennAEYC has a list of upcoming online sessions on our Upcoming Events page. We also want to share other resources from partners across the state:

Resources for Providers and Parents

upgradedpoints.com/best-virtual-museum-tours/(opens in a new tab)

Our partners at NAEYC host a a site for families, NAEYC for Families. Our partners in Southeast PA at First Up: Champions for Early Education has a list of parent resources. Also, our partners in Southwest PA at Trying Together host a parent page

PennAEYC Email Messages