Deal struck for “pay parity” in early childhood education

Nonprofits are celebrating an agreement to implement “salary parity” in early childhood education citywide. The city contracts with many nonprofits to deliver pre-K and other educational programming on behalf of the city, but there was a significant difference in the funding the city would provide for teachers at nonprofits compared to those that worked for the city Department of Education.

That could change following an agreement among Mayor Bill de Blasio, the City Council, nonprofits, and organized labor. The goal is to equalize the pay between certified early childhood education teachers and entry-rate Department of Education salaries by October 1, 2021, according to a July 9 press release.

In response to the agreement, Susan Stamler, executive director of United Neighborhood Houses released the following statement:

“Early childhood education staff work hard every day at community-based organizations (CBOs) to educate and care for New York City children and deserve fair compensation for their work. We applaud today’s announcement that New York City will fund a path towards salary parity for teachers, staff, and directors at CBOs with their counterparts in public schools. We appreciate the dedication of DC 37, DC 1707, and the Day Care Council, as well as our city’s leaders, to this historic agreement.

“As a leader of Campaign for Children, a coalition of over 150 organizations, we know that today’s announcement is a product of years of advocating for high quality early childhood education. In 2016, UNH issued two reports, Losing the Best and Starting Strong, to demonstrate the high performance of CBO programs and offer a new vision for an early childhood system. In 2018, UNH and SeaChange Capital issued a report on a true cost analysis of early childhood education programs in settlement houses that advocated for key investments in the system, including salary parity and more realistic indirect rates.”

Jennifer March of the CCC, meanwhile, had her own take:

“Early childhood education has a transformative impact on children and families — setting the foundation for children’s school success and life-long learning and providing parents with a vital resource that allows them to remain employed and be upwardly mobile. These outcomes are made possible by the teachers, directors and larger early education workforce in community-based and school-based settings across the city. Yet, historically early education teachers in community based organizations (CBOs) have been inadequately compensated in comparison to their Department of Education (DOE) peers, with wide and growing gaps in salaries.

“Today’s labor agreement marks a momentous accomplishment in addressing these pay disparities, providing the CBO workforce with the fairness and respect they have earned and providing children and families with the stability they need from their early education programs.”

Download the full story here.

Get the Latest Updates --> Sign Up!