Written by Chicago Commons.
As workplaces continue to evolve during this unprecedented public health crisis, IMEC continues to help with strategies and creative systems to solve the challenges businesses face.
To that end, one of the unique challenges that many employers and employees face in this moment is childcare options. With so many parents trying to balance working remotely with facilitating their children’s virtual schooling and other developmental needs, it can feel like an endless struggle to find the right path forward.
IMEC has partnered with Chicago Commons to discuss best practices for choosing a childcare provider in the current environment.
Chicago Commons’ mission is to empower individuals, families, and communities to overcome poverty and systemic barriers, embrace opportunities, and thrive across generations. For over 125 years, they have operated in areas where residents are most under-resourced. As a leading provider of high-quality, comprehensive early childhood education using the Reggio Emilia approach for children ages 6 weeks to 5 years old, Chicago Commons operates four accredited year-round early education preschools in four Chicago neighborhood including Back of the Yards, Humboldt Park, and Pilsen.
The Reggio Emilia approach to learning empowers children at Chicago Commons’ early education centers to author their own learning process. Through exploration and discovery, children develop their interests while building the skills to be kindergarten ready. Chicago Commons is among the first in the nation to systematically implement the principles of the Reggio Emilia approach with children from under-resourced communities.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, Chicago Commons, like many early education providers, had to adapt using guidance from public health professionals to provide support to families. To maintain the high quality of care and educational opportunities your family deserves, Chicago Commons recommends asking the following questions as you vet childcare centers for your loved ones:
- How are your centers facilitating enhanced hygiene practices during this time?
- What protocols are in place to reduce the spread of COVID-19?
- How do you allow for safe socialization between students?
- Are students allowed to play outside as weather allows? How are the risks of high touch surfaces being controlled?
- How are meals impacted by increased sanitization requirements?
- How is your center leveraging the power of technology to support families during this challenging time?
- What virtual learning resources are available for early education and/or school aged students?
As you seek out childcare options for your own families, feel free to use this video as a template for ways in which your childcare providers may provide a safe educational environment:
Need help with childcare options or have other questions? Contact the Illinois Manufacturing Helpline.
Employee Childcare Challenges: Support Your Workforce in a Pandemic Panel
November 13 @ 10:00 am
Join the discussion on how companies can support their workforce in the search for safe & reliable childcare, allowing parents to be at work.