Issue Three
May 2011

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Early Childhood Advisory Council Updates  

In This Issue
Weighing in on Obesity Prevention
CCDF Proposed State Plan

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Greetings! This issue of the ECAC newsletter highlights the work of the Obesity Prevention sub-group of the Promoting Healthy Development Work Group.   Thanks to Sara Bonam Welge for taking the time to catch us up with the many ways that this work impacts the health and development of young children, and how the ECAC can help promote it.  Also in this issue is information about how to register for the QUALITYstarsNY videoconference and, under the Announcements Section, you can find the just released QUALITYstarsNY Field Test Evaluation Report, and information about the comment period for the proposed CCDF State Plan. 

Weighing In on What Is Happening With the Obesity Prevention in Child Care Partnership


Because a significant proportion of young children become overweight or obese well before school entry, increased attention is being focused on opportunities for prevention in early care and education settings.   


Why is this important?    


The environmental conditions and behaviors contributing to early childhood obesity also compromise development and learning: unhealthy food and beverage choices, insufficient structured and unstructured physical activity, too much TV/screen time, and early cessation of breastfeeding.  


What is being done to promote healthy changes in early care and education settings in New York State?  


In 2010, a group of early childhood organizations and agencies met to consider the problem of infant and early childhood obesity and to explore opportunities for obesity prevention in the early care and education system.


As a result of this meeting, the Obesity Prevention in Child Care Partnership was formed and affiliated with the ECAC's Promoting Healthy Development workgroup. The Partnership's goal is to improve child health and reduce obesity risk by increasing the number of early care and education settings that implement recognized best practices for nutrition, physical activity, screen time and breastfeeding.    


  • During the coming year, the Partnership will focus on strategies to reduce screen time, eliminate sugar-sweetened beverages and increase breastfeeding support.  The Partnership's goal and planned activities support the Healthy Children component of the ECAC's Strategic Plan, specifically:
  • Provide children with safe and healthy environments in which to grow and develop.
  •  Increase protection, promotion and support for breastfeeding when mothers return to the workforce.
  • Strengthen and expand current efforts to promote health and safety in early care and education settings through the development of standards, training and consultation.
  • Identify opportunities to collaborate with existing public health programs and initiatives to achieve key outcomes for children, including healthy weight and nutrition.
  • Increase the percentage of children who have optimal physical, emotional and cognitive development.
  • Decrease the percentage of children who are overweight or obese.


For more information on best practices and obesity prevention in early care and education see:


Preventing Childhood Obesity in Early Care and Education Programs


Why Focus on Food and Physical Activity Environments? 


Statewide Videoconference for QUALITYstarsNY

Tuesday, May 24, 2011
2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Over 30 downlink locations all over New York State! 


Go to 

to register for the location most convenient to you!


Target Audience     


Licensors, Registrars, Pre-K Administrators, Resource and Referral agency staff, CSEA field representatives, Policy makers, Stakeholders and others interested in young children. 


Please join us for a statewide videoconference about QUALITYstarsNY.  The purpose of this event is to communicate with interested colleagues about New York's quality rating and improvement system. Hear first-hand from leaders in the field of early care and education in New York State about the importance of QUALITYstarsNY and the opportunities it offers.  Results from the recent Field Test are in!

  • What did we learn?
  • What happens now?
  • How can we get ready for statewide implementation?

Special Guests Include

  • Janice Molnar, Deputy Commissioner, OCFS, Co-Chair ECAC Quality Improvement Work Group 
  • Anne Mitchell,  Early Childhood Policy Research, Co-Chair ECAC Quality Improvement Work Group 
  • Sherry Cleary, Executive Director, NYC Early Childhood Professional Development Institute, Co-Chair Early Childhood Advisory Council  
  • Bob Frawley, Deputy Director, Council on Children and Families, Co-Chair Early Childhood Advisory Council 
  • Ola Friday, Project Coordinator, NYC Early Childhood Professional Development Institute
  • Meg McNiff,  Director of the Office of Early Learning, NYS Education Department 

 If you have questions or need more information, check out 

or contact:




QUALITYstarsNY Field Test Evaluation Report


The ECAC is pleased to announce the release of the QUALITYstarsNY Field Test Evaluation Report by the Center for Assessment and Policy Development, the National Center for Children and Poverty and Lisa A. McCabe.  We would like to extend our thanks to the dedicated programs and providers that made the field test a reality.  The executive summary and full report are available here:  

Now Open for Comments:  CCDF Proposed Plan 

Now is your chance to provide input into the development of the final Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF) two-year plan for New York State.  information on the plan is available on the OCFS website at  ECAC members can e-mail comments to

Please note comment period closes Monday, May 23rd, 2011.



The ECAC extends its congratulations to our Quality Improvement Work Group member, Peggy Liuzzi, for winning a NYSAEYC 2011 Champions for Children Award.  Peggy led the original group that oversaw the formation of draft standards for QUALITYstarsNY and has been a steadfast leader in the promotion of QUALITYstarsNY for many years.

Thank you for your interest in the Early Childhood Advisory Council. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please contact me at:


Regina Canuso

Project Manager 

NYS Early Childhood Advisory Council

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