The Massachusetts Board of Early Education and Care, which has been reviewing its transportation policies since August, voted on June 12 to increase reiumbursement rates, subject to additional appropriations, and to implement transportation safety training.
The policy approved at its last meeting of the 2011-12 year would:
- Increase the transportation reiumbursement rate for infants, toddlers and preschool-aged children to $16.51 per round trip and $11.11 for one-way transportation and require an adult monitor to be present in all vehicles transporting these young children. The increase is subject to a supplemental budget appropriation. Neither the rate increase nor the adult monitor requirement would go into effect unless the Legislature approves the additional funds.
- Leave the reiumbursement rate for the transportation of school-age children unchanged, at $9 per round trip and $6 per one-way trip.
- Require transportation providers receiving funds from the Department of Education and Care (EEC) to submit a plan for administrative oversight of their programs.
- Require drivers to participate in annual safety training and enroll in EEC’s Professional Qualifications Registry.
In other news from the June meeting of the EEC board, Commissioner Killins noted that 13 early educators from around the commonwealth received Early Education and Care Exceptional Educator and Instructional Leader Awards. They were recognized at EEC’s Brain Building and Early Literacy and Early Numeracy Conference in Worcester last month.
A panel updated the board on the Museums and Libraries Partnership for Parent, Family and Community Engagement, an initiative funded through the federal Early Learning Challenge grant that Massachusetts was awarded in December. The partnership will focus on early literacy, school readiness, STEM (science, technology, engineering and math), and the department’s Brain Building in Progress awareness campaign. Jeri Robinson, vice president for education and family learning at the Boston Children’s Museum; Kim DeWall, coordinator of early childhood resource centers in Massachusetts libraries; and Shelly Quezada of the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners made the presentation to the board. (See Museums and Libraries Partnership for Parent, Family and Community Engagement – Panel Discussion / Panelist Bios.)