Early Childhood Education

Latino Network Collaborates on Two Bills in Oregon Legislature

Join us to support culturally specific early learning! 

We are excited to announce that we are collaborating on two early childhood education bills in the Oregon Legislature this session! 

 HB3069 will create a fund for culturally specific programs focused on early learning. And the other priority (does not have a bill number yet) will create a certification path for Community Education Workers based on the Traditional Health Worker certification model. 
We have been meeting with lawmakers and will be testifying on the bills in the coming months. We have also hired our first lobbyist to help us work with partners and lawmakers!

If you're interested in supporting HB3069, you can join us for a hearing on Tuesday, April 18 at the State Capitol or by submitting written testimony! 


HB 3069 - Early Childhood Equity Fund
April 18, 2017
1:00 - 3:00 (please arrive no later than 12:45)
Hearing Room D of State Capitol

The bills

1) HB3069 - Early Childhood Equity Fund

Families and children of color are a large and growing part of Oregon’s early learning community – 36.5% of all births in Oregon are babies of color! Yet, too often they do not have access to culturally specific programs.  Just 16% of Latino children have access to Head Start in their community. 

Oregon funds many amazing early childhood programs with state dollars, however, only a small number of programs are eligible for this program. Given the growing population, more needs to be done to serve our children of color. 

Nonprofit organizations with culturally specific programs are most prepared to meet this need. Programs like Juntos Aprendemos at Latino Network and many other culturally specific programs across the state have a track record of supporting school readiness and family stability. 

This bill will create an Early Childhood Equity Fund, dedicated to funding culturally specific early learning services. If the Oregon Legislature passes this bill, it will be an important step in closing the opportunity gap for our children of color. 

2) Certified Early Childhood Community Education Worker

In the past two years, our Community Education Worker project has seen tremendous results! Today, people who work with young children – from child care providers to preschool teachers to home visitors like our CEWs – are increasingly recognized for their professionalism. 

We know that training for these early learning providers is critically important. Past efforts, however, have focused on pushing early learning teachers to earn associate’s degrees, bachelor’s degrees, and certifications at community colleges. 

These pathways are admirable, but they leave many professionals behind. Home visitors, community education workers, family advocates, and others don’t have a path for professionalization. 

And for people of color or anyone who does not speak English, who face historical barriers in accessing higher education and career training, the difficulties are even greater. 

This bill will create a certification program for Community Education Workers, modeled after the existing Oregon Traditional health Worker training program. This will ensure opportunities for professionalization while removing other barriers. 

Want to learn more or submit a written testimony? Contact Sadie Feibel Holmes, Director of Early Childhood Programs.

Umpqua Bank Awards Impact Grant to Latino Network

Grant Fuels Juntos Aprendemos Expansion

“If more kids had this opportunity, we would save many headaches when our children grow up. We would even save money. The jails would close.” –Juntos Aprendemos parent participant

Latino Network is excited to announce we are one of four recipients of the 2016 Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation Community Impact Grant!

The award is for three years, $135,000 to expand Juntos Aprendemos early childhood education program.

Because of this investment, Juntos Aprendemos will be able to expand to three new schools in the next three years, and 150 more Latino children and parents will be able to access this critical early learning opportunity.

“For more than fifteen years, Juntos Aprendemos has successfully been preparing kids and families to succeed in kindergarten,” said Executive Director Carmen Rubio. “We are so grateful to Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation for recognizing the program’s value to our Latino communities, and funding this expansion to ensure our Latino children are ready for kindergarten.” Read the 15-year retrospective report

In addition to the financial investment, this grant will also provide additional partnership benefits between Latino Network and Umpqua Bank. We look forward to partnering on volunteer opportunities and other activities to strengthen our communities together.

“As a community bank, Umpqua Bank is committed to investing in the communities we serve,” said Nicole Stein, Vice President Community Responsibility at Umpqua Bank. “We believe we have an obligation to give back in meaningful ways, particularly to help make a difference in the lives of children and families.”

Umpqua Bank Charitable Foundation also funded three other non-profits with Impact Grants: United Way of the Wine Country in Santa Rosa, CA; Salem-Keizer Education Foundation in Salem, OR; and Baker City School District in Baker City, OR.

About Juntos Aprendemos

For more than fifteen years, Juntos Aprendemos [Together We Learn] has been a community-based program working successfully with Latino children and parents. Juntos Aprendemos is a model early childhood education program designed to engage 3-5 year olds and their parents to address the opportunity gaps and disparities in school readiness faced by Spanish-speaking children in our community. Read more about the program