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Early Childhood Evaluation Hub Launches


Between 2021 and 2022, the Colorado Department of Early Childhood (CDEC) received over $465 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funds and ARPA Child Care and Development Fund supplemental discretionary award funding. This stimulus funding is focused on strategies to strengthen and expand the early childhood sector in Colorado and support families and the workforce to ensure all children have access to high-quality child care. CDEC awarded a $4.8 million contract to the Colorado Lab in September 2022 to serve as the early childhood evaluation hub for this stimulus funding, based on our experience and expertise in government, research partnerships, and evaluation.

The Colorado Lab is contracting with local evaluation partners including ECE Insights, Brodsky Research and Consulting, the Butler Institute at the University of Denver, MDRC, and Diana Schaack at the University of Colorado Denver to support this work. We also are seeking an additional evaluation partner (see boxed information).

The expertise of these partners, and the Colorado Lab’s management of partners across diverse streams of work, provides CDEC with the confidence that high-quality research and evaluation will be accomplished and removes the burden of managing this complex work within state government.

To learn more, please contact Dr. Whitney LeBoeuf.

Early Childhood Evaluation Hub:
Contract Evaluation Opportunity

The Early Childhood Evaluation Hub is looking for an evaluation partner to study CDEC’s grants for employer-based child care and its Emerging and Expanding grant program. Both of these efforts are designed to increase the availability of licensed child care in Colorado. These grants were awarded in June 2022 and must be spent by the end of September 2023. The work will involve:

  • Systems-level analysis of the grant programs’ goals, implementation design, and success in targeting applicants to achieve the goals.
  • Grantee-level purposeful sampling to examine the implementation experience.

The evaluation work will begin in February 2023 and be completed by June 2024. If you are interested, please complete the Call for External Research Partners questionnaire and email Ellen Witt at ellen@coloradolab.org.