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DCYF Early Childhood Equity Grant Technical Assistance

The Fair Start for Kids Act (FSKA) directs the Washington State Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) to distribute funds to support inclusive and culturally and linguistically specific early learning and early childhood and parent support programs across the state. The funds are distributed through the Early Childhood Equity Grant and are intended to serve as a step toward expanding access to early learning statewide and transforming Washington’s early learning system to make it more inclusive and equitable.

DCYF’s purpose statement for the Early Childhood Equity Grant is as follows: To direct funding to the early care and education community and parent support programs, with a priority placed on BIPOC providers and providers serving BIPOC children, to advance and inspire practices that promote inclusive and culturally responsive learning, environments, and enhanced language access.

 

Grant funds must be used to incorporate inclusive practices, culturally and linguistically supportive and relevant practices, or both into early learning program design, delivery, education, training, and/or evaluation.

ELIGIBILITY

The Early Childhood Equity Grant is awarded through a competitive grant process. Applying does not guarantee that an eligible provider will receive a grant award. Eligible applicants may only receive one Equity Grant every two years.

Eligibility is open to:

Licensed or certified child care providers with an open license in good standing.

License-exempt Family, Friend, and Neighbor (FFN) caregivers serving children receiving state subsidies.

ECEAP contractors.

Play and Learn Groups that are recognized by Child Care Aware of Washington (CCA of WA) and currently receive funding and/or direct programming support from CCA of WA to actively provide direct and virtual education and materials to parents and FFN caregivers, as a result of a contractual agreement between CCA of WA and the State of Washington and passed on to the recognized Play and Learn Group.

Each facility applying must have at least one child enrolled or regularly receiving care at the time of the application.

For licensed, certified, and license-exempt FFN providers: grants are awarded to a specific licensed facility/site, not to a larger organization. Providers with multiple licensed locations will need to submit a separate application for each licensed site that qualifies to apply for a grant.

Facilities that are both licensed and serving ECEAP slots may only apply through their ECEAP contractor. ECEAP contractor applications may include funds for non-ECEAP classrooms at the same facility.

ECEAP contractors should submit a single application with information on all sites, including non-ECEAP classrooms within ECEAP-funded sites.

What can the Grant be Used for?

Grant funds must be used to incorporate inclusive practices, culturally and linguistically supportive and relevant practices, or both into program design, program delivery, program evaluation, and/or staff education and training.

This can include things like:

Grant funds may not be used for:

Application Information

Different types of providers will have different ways to apply for this grant. Licensed/certified providers and FFN providers should apply through WA Compass. ECEAP contractors and Play and Learn Groups should apply through our SmartSheet application. Links to both will be available on the DCYF website when the grant application opens.
You can locate it by clicking here.

Contact us to connect with a Technical Assistant

Call us at 206-492-5249 or email us at [email protected]imaginewa.org.

Important information

The Early Childhood Equity Grant is awarded through a competitive grant process. All applications received within the application period will be reviewed.

First, all applications will be screened for eligibility and completeness using the criteria described in the Application Preview Guide. To be considered, applications must be complete, for eligible facilities, and propose projects that are eligible for funding. If more eligible applications are submitted for funding than DCYF is able to fund, the agency will prioritize applications according to factors decided in collaboration with providers during the design process. Once an applicant has been awarded grant funds, all funds must be spent within two years of receiving the grant award and within the scope of the proposed project.

 

Providers can request the amount of funding needed to make the desired improvement(s) to their early learning program design, program delivery, program evaluation, and/or staff education/training. Providers may request funds in any or all of these categories.

 

Award amounts will vary by provider type. DCYF will accept requests within the following ranges based on provider type:

Provider TypeMinimum AwardMaximum Award
Licensed/certified providers$15,000$100,000
Family, Friend, and Neighbor (FFN) providers$100$2,000
Play and Learn groups$5,000$30,000
ECEAP contractors$15,000$100,000

Applications with requests outside of those ranges will not be considered.

Providers must keep all receipts from purchases made with Early Childhood Equity Grant funds for five years and may be asked to submit receipts to DCYF. If the provider is unable to submit receipts, they may be required to return part or all of the funds to the State of Washington.

IMPORTANT DATES

Application opensLATE JUNE 2022
Application closesEARLY AUGUST 2022
Scoring team meetsEARLY/MID-AUGUST 2022
Decisions announcedAUGUST/SEPTEMBER 2022
Payments processed2-4 weeks after approval notifications

Need Assistance?

Technical assistance is available in both 1-on-1 or small group sessions.

These sessions can be delivered in-person, virtually, or over the phone. 

Technical assistance is available to support you in your preferred language.

 

Technical assistance can:

  • Help you apply for the DCYF Early Childhood Equity Grant
  • Understand how funding can be used, and records need to be maintained.
  • Connect providers to resources and answer additional questions.

Contact us to connect with a Technical Assistant

Call us at 206-492-5249 or email us at [email protected].