Growing the Workforce Newsletter

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Through the Power of Learning


The Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF) new newsletter, Growing the Workforce, is a resource for all individuals who are in the business of delivering professional learning supports to the early learning workforce.

This quarterly newsletter takes place of the former Trainer Gazette.


What's in This Issue?

Expanding Child Care Access During COVID-19

group of children in classroom

DCYF is implementing workforce supports in response to COVID-19. This effort is for licensed providers caring for children requesting additional staffing from the state’s substitute pool.

The goal is to address COVID-19 impact on child care by:

  • Providing substitutes and other connections for available and interested workers to meet the needs of licensed program staffing shortages or expanded capacity (wages subsidized by the state)
  • Connect programs with eligible workers for recruitment support (wages not subsidized by the state)

If you are interested in being a substitute in a licensed facility, you can reach out to the Imagine Institute at 206-492-5249 or

Delivering Online Training

woman presenting in front of computer

Did you get a chance to read the recent notice DCYF sent out about in-person training? 

Many in-person trainings may be delivered online, as a self-paced/correspondence course or a hybrid of both.

Once you decide your next steps related to your training delivery, please update MERIT to reflect your delivery strategy or cancellation.

Online Training Tips

As you are trying to decide if training online is an option for you, keep the following in mind:

  • Length: Trainings of more than three hours in-person should be broken down into shorter units.
  • Engagement: Incorporate interactive features to keep a live-training feel and engage participants. Some examples include the use of the chat/discussion board feature, polls, Mentimeter and quizzes.
  • Email/Mail: Independent study and correspondence training can be done via email or postal mail.
  • Follow up: Online trainings that have little or no interactivity between participants or between the participants and the instructor may be followed-up with discussion either by webinar, virtual meeting or by phone.
  • Online resources: There are many different types of online software with virtual meeting spaces that are available for you to facilitate a live training (e.g. Zoom, GoToTraining). Fees may be associated with online software.

Increasing Access to Child Care Basics

Online video computer

DCYF is adapting the Child Care Basics (CCB) curriculum to be offered online for free through DCYF's learning management system (LMS).

The online curriculum is expected to roll-out in the summer of 2020. Other online CCB offerings will be phased out.

DCYF is undertaking this project to ensure this training appropriately addresses all of the federal training requirements.

To learn about the multiple ways to meet this training requirement, visit Completing Child Care Basics.

Update Your Trainer MERIT Information

picture of merit on a comp

Our team recently pulled data on the state-approved trainer workforce and noticed that many trainers have outdated information in their MERIT records.

Please take a few minutes to update your information, including:

  • Name
  • Email
  • Name of your affiliated organization

This will ensure that we tell a more accurate story about our state-approved trainer workforce.

Relationship-Based Professional Development


You may have noticed the growing attention placed on Relationship-Based Professional Development (RBPD) from the Professional Development team.

DCYF is committed to building a diverse relationship-based professional workforce to ensure that all community-level participants are receiving individualized, responsive and effective services. This effort will move us toward the DCYF vision that all children and families have an opportunity to flourish.

Why is this important?

  • Learning through relationships yields greater long-term outcomes for educators, children and families.
  • DCYF has an extensive RBPD workforce and is looking to create aligned standards and professional learning opportunities across programs.
  • We need to collect workforce data so that we can effectively provide opportunities for these programs.
  • We need to be able to meet the demand for diverse relationship-based professionals.

Find out more about the work being done on the RBPD system and participate in our April 21 webinar focused on RBPD (more information below).

Learning Opportunities | April and May


What is Relationship-Based Professional Development Anyway?

Join us Tuesday, April 21 at 6 p.m. for a live webinar to learn about how DCYF plans to grow a diverse RBPD workforce that will provide all community-level participants to receive individualized, responsive and effective services.

We'll discuss the following topics in detail:

  • Role of RBPD in DCYF’s vision for children and families
  • Need for building a RBPD system
  • Major milestones and timeline of the initiative

Register here

lap top webinar

State-Approved Trainer Renewal Process

On Wednesday, May 6 at 6 p.m., we will share the new state-approved trainer renewal process through a live webinar. 

This is a great opportunity to learn about the "why" behind the renewal process, as well as the stages of implementation and what you'll need to do before this goes into effect later this year.

This webinar is geared toward current state-approved trainers and administrators of training programs.

Register here

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)


I am a state-approved trainer and I heard that I need to go through trainer renewal by the end of the year. What does that mean?

All state-approved trainers will need to renew their trainer status by the end of the year. The trainer renewal process will give us an updated roster of active state-approved trainers in MERIT, and help us ensure that trainers are following the standards of practice and professionalism for their role. The renewal process is still under construction. We will introduce the process and give you an opportunity to provide feedback in late spring.

What is happening with the Trainer Advisory Board?

We have been working hard at streamlining and simplifying many of our behind-the-scenes policies and frameworks. As the work of our team evolved, so did many of our processes. We have decided to move away from the Trainer Advisory Board, and instead explore other opportunities to engage stakeholders. Our goal is to ensure that everyone has an opportunity to chime in and inform our policy-making. Over the years, the board members have supported major decision-making on training-related issues. We want to recognize them for their contributions and express gratitude for their leadership in our field!

I’m interested in becoming a state-approved trainer, what do I need to do?  

You can still apply. Due to COVID-19 social distancing, the training demonstration will need to be virtual or you could submit your training materials to the Professional Development team for review.

How can I become a trainer observer?

We are recruiting trainer observers across the state, with special priority on the eastside of our state. If you are interested in learning more about this, please reach out to


light bulb

Are you supporting a provider who is providing care to a multi-age classroom?

Maybe you know of a program who needs ideas for activities?

We have put together a list of resources that you can share with your families and caregivers as they are shifting into a different child care reality.

Information on COVID-19

DCYF has a webpage dedicated to Coronavirus - COVID-19 Updates. Questions related to COVID-19 can be sent to This inbox is monitored daily.

Additional resources include:



Share, Share, Share!

This newsletter is geared toward individuals who deliver professional learning supports to the early learning workforce.

If you know someone in this field who might be interested in subscribing, please share. 

If you would like to subscribe or unsubscribe to this newsletter, email Marlene White.

Questions, Comments or Suggestions

We would like to make this a useful resource for you.

Please let us know if you have any questions or ideas for the newsletter. Email us!