Founder of FATHUM: Learning Solutions an education consulting company dedicated to closing the achievement gap of low-income underserved children by using innovative strategies and e-learning. I have close to thirty years of experience in education and human services program design and implementation. I founded and lead a community-based nonprofit that changed the ECE landscape in MD. I am originally from Colombia, fully bilingual and multicultural. I have dedicated my life to early childhood- no other issue is a crucial to our future. I am mother, a warrior, a dreamer, and a doer.
I am thrilled and moved to see your proposal- It reminds me very much of the community based organization that I founded and operated for over 10 years. Our mission and approach were almost identical. We successfully licensed over 300 unlicensed Spanish-speaking providers in Maryland and moved many of them through a professional development ladder that took them all the way to NAFCC accreditation. Our providers were so high quality that one of our local Early Head Starts started to used them for their infants and toddlers, before FCC became an option in EHS. ESCALERAS was inspired by this work and a desire to scale and replicate the first step in the ladder so that other communities can begin this urgent and important work. We would be so excited to pilot ESCALERAS in NM with your help.
I know how challenging , and deeply rewarding, your work is. I commend you for your efforts, and wish you the best of luck!
Great question! This was one of the most interesting outcomes of our Philadelphia pilot. Our community partner felt strongly that ESCALERAS could be used with other non-english-speaking communities in their city. In fact they also felt that this model could be used in the English-speaking community! This was something we had not contemplated. It would be a great model for rural and isolated communities that have less resources. In the Beta phase, we are going to translate everything into English! We are excited about the possibility of getting a grant for creating family childcare in refugee communities. This would give us an opportunity to translate and adapt materials to the community we partner with. Our plan is to have several language versions by the end of this year.
Andreana- I love you project and I think we should definitely collaborate. I just finished a consultancy project with the National Ministry of Education in Colombia to help them define the standards for a national licensing system for early childhood education. I really pushed for the virtualization of capacity building through e-learning and social media. Your model, combined with ours could be powerful! Good luck and let's try to connect after the competition if over! Buena suerte!!