Policy Transformation


Child Care Associates Southside center in Fort Worth, Texas on April 20, 2017. (Photo by/ Sharon Ellman )

Policy Transformation:

As the largest early childhood development organization in the region, CCA understands that it has an obligation to support organizations that deliver early childhood education by identifying, developing and driving the policies that help these organizations improve the lives of the children and families they serve.

Childcare Associates Park Lake Center photos taken in Fort Worth, Texas on December 1, 2015. (Photo by/Gregg Ellman)

Identifying and Developing Best Practices

Always striving to improve services for families, CCA has tried out innovative ideas to improve upon current practices. Currently, our work with Incredible Years® curriculum continues to support the family-oriented services that we provide. Specifically, we are using the evidence-based lessons to prevent and reduce the development of young children’s behavior problems, which have often stymied the growth of academic, social and emotional success in these children.

Extending our Reach

CCA advises policy institutes and advocacy organizations that deal with a range of policy issues on how to conduct robust changes in policy governing children ages birth to age five. We have collaborated with Children at Risk, Texas Care for Children, National League of Cities, Center for Public Policy Priorities, Texas Educational Grantmakers Advocacy Consortium, and Early Matters Dallas.

Realizing Change

For example, in 2015, we were asked to improve foster children’s access to early childhood education. Our experts recognized that the system in place unnecessarily put roadblocks in front of foster parents seeking assistance. As a result, we developed and insured the adoption of new policies that shortened the waiting period for the placement of foster children in childcare from six to eight weeks to no more than five days. In addition, we found a way for foster children and children experiencing homelessness to enter Head Start and Early Head Start programs without ever being placed on a wait list.

To Read more about the Foster Care Redesign, please visit:

Creating a United Front

Our president Kara Waddell chairs the local Early Learning Alliance, of group of nearly 50 organizations and agencies in North Texas that provides a united front to guide policy change and respond to legislative opportunities.

In addition, CCA is pursuing ways to bring together researchers and practitioners in the early childhood education landscape in North Texas to share their collective wisdom, to discuss the gaps in current policy, and to advocate for the changes in policy the group deems important.


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