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County Program Profile: Inyo
Time Period: 2019–2020
QRIS :: Quality Counts Inyo County
The Quality Rating and Improvement System (QRIS), Quality Counts, serving programs in Inyo, Mono, and Alpine Counties, is administered by the Inyo County Office of Education (ICSOS). Since July 2015, a total of 16 California State Preschool Program (CSPP) classrooms at 13 sites across the three-county region have been rated and have received support to improve quality. Specifically, Inyo County includes nine of the State Preschool Programs that have been rated in the three-county region. The QRIS continuum contains five levels, which measure several elements of program quality grouped under the following core areas: (1) Child Development and School Readiness, (2) Teachers and Teaching, and (3) Program and Environment. All participating programs are committed to improving program quality, and those programs exceeding minimum program and licensing requirements can become eligible for grant funds to support their quality improvement work. Programs meeting requirements are eligible to receive coaching and advising to support their movement along the continuum of quality.
Non-CSPP-funded sites participating in the Quality Counts QRIS in Inyo County began working toward implementing the continuum of quality by developing goals aligned with the elements contained within the three core areas listed above. These sites also share a commitment to improving program quality and work with a quality improvement (QI) coach to develop a Quality Improvement Plan (QIP) to support implementation of action steps toward their goal areas. Sites are building familiarity with the components of the continuum, including assessment tools, through training and advising offered by the QI coach. As sites implement certain components of the continuum, which is outlined in the QIP, they are eligible to receive stipends or incentives including an incentive for the initial implementation of certain assessments, an incentive for the initial development for the QIP with the QI coach, stipends for minimum hours of professional development hours completed, and one-on-one coaching and advising visits directly at the participant’s site.
County Contact Information
- California Department of Education
- First 5 California
- First 5 Inyo
- First 5 Alpine
- First 5 Mono
- Inyo Mono Advocates for Community Advocates
- Child Care Connection
- Mono County Office of Education
- Alpine County Office of Education
Process to Outreach/Onboard Programs and Providers
Currently, we have engaged all the California State Preschool Program (CSPP) sites in Inyo County. In addition, because the Inyo County Office of Education is the only State Preschool contract holder in Inyo County, which also subcontracts with all the local Head Start grantees, all Head Start/CSPP preschools are also currently participating in the local QCC system. The majority of licensed family child care homes in Inyo County were initially engaged at the launch of local QCC activities four years ago; as a result, local recruitment efforts are primarily focused on engaging newly licensed sites into the QCC Step 1, 2, or 3 system. The local resource and referral agency works collaboratively with local QCC to integrate QCC as part of the licensing support process. For example, local provider recruitment and retention activities include onboarding newly licensed sites into QCC. In addition, QCC staff and/or coaching staff are present during resource and referral provider recruitment and engagement activities. Our local resource and referral/child care initiative partners have been an integral piece in attempting to engage family, friend, neighbor, nanny, or other exempt-care providers through play group–based monthly activities. These efforts are most certainly aligned and are part of the local QCC system, although these sites are not currently engaged at the Step 1, 2, or 3.
Quality Improvement Program Support Strategies
The majority of Inyo QCC quality improvement support strategies include the following in-person training opportunities at no cost: California Preschool Instructional Network; Child Care Initiative Project; Strengthening Families; and Region 6 Hub–sponsored training (i.e., CLASS, ECERS, Ages and Stages Questionnaire, play-based approaches, trauma-informed practices). Step 2 participating sites receive the following supports: monthly coaching visits by the QCC quality improvement coach; development of Quality Improvement Plan; monthly training; CLASS; ECERS/ITERS/FCCERS; implementation of ASQ-3 and ASQ-SE; and family engagement support. Step 3 sites are able to attend all local in-person training, as applicable, as well as on-site coaching, if rated at Tiers 1–3. Currently, we have no Step 3 sites that have received a tier rating below 4.
Local Approach to Offering Financial Incentives and Stipends
All financial incentives for Inyo QCC sites are concentrated at Step 2 and Step 3. Step 2 sites receive a one-time incentive to develop a site Quality Improvement Plan. Newly engaged sites receive a one-time incentive to implement ASQ and a professional development incentive for minimum hours of professional development or completion of college/university unit-based Early Childhood Education coursework.