Early Learners Connection Program

Early Learner Connections program (ELC) is community partnership between Spring Lake Park ECFE and home and center-based childcare providers to support of healthy development of infants, toddlers and preschool children in the community. 

Supporting the healthy development of infants, toddlers and preschool children through community collaboration is a priority of Spring Lake Park Schools ECFE program. The goals of the Early Learner Connections (ELC) program are to provide expanded support throughout the community by:

  • Supporting children’s optimal growth and development in the early years, using the Early Childhood Indicators of Progress (ECIP’s), Minnesota’s early learning standards
  • Providing assistance to child care providers to make sure that the children in their care and their families are ready for kindergarten
  • Offering in-home professional development and learning opportunities for child care providers
    • The ECFE team collaborates with interested local child care providers, at no cost to the provider. During the home visits, child care providers have the opportunity to consult with a licensed family/parent educator on specific challenges they face and gain a connection with SLP schools. Child care providers can earn CEU’s for the home visits to apply towards their licensing requirements.

"One of the main goals behind the ELC program is to make sure we reach all Spring Lake Park children, whether they attend our early learning offerings or not. We want to work together with other community programs to support kindergarten-readiness in our area. "
Kristin Goessel-Seery, the district’s Early Childhood Programs Coordinator

What can providers expect during a visit?

During the one hour child care visit, you will consult with a licensed early childhood/family specialist and ask any questions you may have. Subsequent visits will be tailored to provide support for your unique child care environment based on specific needs you have. Areas that providers may choose to focus consultations on may include:

  • Learning more about kindergarten readiness in Spring Lake Park Schools, the ECIP’s and other early childhood resources
  • Routines, schedules and transitions
  • Providing a high-quality learning environment
  • Each child’s unique temperament
  • Developing an increased knowledge of child development
  • Challenging behaviors and age-appropriate expectations
  • How to make referrals for children in your care

What is the cost?

There is no cost to you, the provider, and you can decide how long you wish to participate. Our hope is that we can support you in the very important role you play in the lives of the children you care for.

What are the benefits?

  • Providers will have an opportunity to consult with an experienced early childhood professional to focus on specific issues they are experiencing and discuss day-to-day challenges that may occur when working with young children
  • Providers will gain a connection with their local public school and be provided with resources and services that may be available for children, families and providers
  • A licensed early childhood professional will provide on-site professional development for providers who choose to participate
  • CEU’s, approved by Anoka County Child Care Licensing, will be awarded at the end of the home visits to apply towards your licensing requirements

How do I enroll?

Follow these easy steps to enroll in Spring Lake Park Schools' Early Learner Connections Program:

  1. Contact Barb, the Spring Lake Park ECFE Outreach Coordinator, to express your interest. You can leave a message at 763-600-5938 or send an email at bsaund@district16.org to set up an appointment.
  2. Prior to your first visit, providers need to complete the following forms, which will be sent to you:
    • Inventory of Practices Survey
    • ECFE Early Childhood Coaching Agreement
  3. After completing the forms, the initial home visit will be scheduled. Most visits will be scheduled during your site’s nap time.
Students smiling reading books together

We look forward to partnering with you to support each child’s developmental journey.