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YoungStar Administration

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

In November 2021, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) issued its required, regularly scheduled, Request for Proposal for the administration of the YoungStar Quality Rating and Improvement System. Following an extensive process, the department issued an intent to award the contract to Shine Early Learning and is currently finalizing the contract. Shine Early Learning will administer all YoungStar services after a transition period with the current YoungStar administrator, Supporting Families Together Association (SFTA). Although transition and contract details are being finalized, we expect Shine to administer all YoungStar services by spring 2023.

Shine Early Learning, SFTA, and DCF are all committed to working together on a smooth transition, with uninterrupted, high-quality YoungStar services. Although your YoungStar local office, consultant, and/or rater may be changing, many things will remain the same. Throughout the transition and beyond, you can expect the following: 

  • Shine Early Learning staff will be using the same criteria as the current consultants to complete your rating, and the DCF-planned rating criteria change will not occur until early 2025 at the earliest.
  • If you have already been rated by YoungStar, and need to be rated again, you will continue to hold your current rating until YoungStar staff are able to complete a new rating.
  • YoungStar staff and local regional offices will continue to be located across Wisconsin, similar to the current model.
  • Onsite consultation visits will continue to be an option within YoungStar for any program that requests it. DCF is committed to ensuring that all programs have access to onsite support now, and in the future.
  • Providers will be able to select onsite consultation, virtual consultation, group consultation with other providers, and/or access to an online resource site. Providers will be asked to decide which type, how much, and which delivery method (virtual or onsite) of consultation they prefer. 
  • SFTA and the Child Care Resource and Referral agencies will continue providing: 
    • Resources and referrals for families and providers
    • Trainings and technical assistance for families and providers
    • Free foundational trainings
    • Support for tribal nations
    • Outreach and recruitment for certification and pre-licensing
    • Project Growth activities - including Partner Up! and Business Child Care Advocates
  • Currently, Shine Early Learning is building a local, Wisconsin team of consultants, coaches, and raters. YoungStar staff and local regional offices will continue to be located across Wisconsin, similar to the current model.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

 

What is Shine Early Learning?

Shine Early Learning has worked with individual early childhood providers, states, municipalities and school districts to implement proven practices that deliver positive results for children, families and communities. For the past 10 years, Shine has built a track record of supporting early childhood education systems and providers. Today Shine contracts with the states of Indiana, Delaware and North Carolina, the city of Philadelphia, the New York City Department of Education and the Philadelphia School District, as well as more than 40 other organizations, universities and companies, to provide ongoing training and technical assistance to early childhood education providers.

What role will Shine Early Learning play in YoungStar?

In November 2021, the Department of Children and Families (DCF) issued its required, regularly scheduled, Request for Proposal for the administration of the YoungStar Quality Rating and Improvement System. Following an extensive process, the department issued an intent to award the contract to Shine Early Learning and is currently finalizing the contract.

Shine Early Learning will administer all YoungStar services after a transition period with the current YoungStar administrator, Supporting Families Together Association (SFTA). This means that local Shine staff will be providing consultation and coaching to providers, completing ratings that are based on DCF’s YoungStar Evaluation Criteria, and offering trainings. Local Shine staff will also link providers to other supports available in Wisconsin, based on provider request or need.

For effective statewide implementation of YoungStar, Shine will also manage and evaluate processes and outcomes, coordinate professional development for YoungStar staff, and assure quality of services by joining consultants, coaches, and raters periodically on visits.

What roles will Supporting Families Together Association (SFTA) and the Child Care Resource and Referral (CCR&R) Network play in the future?

SFTA and the Child Care Resource and Referral agencies will continue providing:

  • Resources and referrals for families and providers
  • Trainings and technical assistance for families and providers
  • Free foundational trainings
  • Support for tribal nations
  • Outreach and recruitment for certification and pre-licensing
  • Project Growth activities - including Partner Up! and Business Child Care Advocates

Are there any changes to what programs are being rated on?

No. Shine Early Learning staff will be using the same criteria as the current consultants to complete your rating, and the DCF-planned rating criteria change will not occur until early 2025 at the earliest.

My program has been working with a coach or consultant from my local CCR&R office, what does this mean for me?

Shine Early Learning, SFTA, and DCF are all committed to working together on a smooth transition, with uninterrupted, high-quality YoungStar services. During this transitional phase, you may see a change in your consultant and when your consultation services will begin. Although transition and contract details are being finalized, we expect Shine to administer all YoungStar coaching and consultation services by spring 2023.

Providers will be able to select onsite consultation, virtual consultation, group consultation with other providers, and/or access to an online resource site. Providers will be asked to decide which type, how much, and which delivery method (virtual or onsite) of consultation they prefer.

Who from Shine Early Learning will be working with my program in the future?

Currently, Shine Early Learning is building a local, Wisconsin team of consultants, coaches, and raters. YoungStar staff and local regional offices will continue to be located across Wisconsin, similar to the current model.

I've heard that my program cannot receive in-person coaching or consultation in the future. Is that true?

Onsite consultation visits from a consultant will continue to be an important and available support within YoungStar for any program that requests it.

What options will my program have in terms of requesting support from YoungStar?

Providers will be able to select onsite consultation, virtual consultation, group consultation with other providers, and/or access to an online resource site. Providers will be asked to decide which type, how much, and which delivery method (virtual or onsite) of consultation they prefer.

If I have to wait to get rated, will I lose my star rating?

If you have already been rated by YoungStar, and need to be rated again, you will continue to hold your current rating until YoungStar staff are able to complete a new rating. Changes in lead staff may impact your star rating, as it does now, and grace periods will continue to be available.

If you have not been rated by YoungStar, and need to complete your first rating, you will continue to meet the participation requirements for Wisconsin Shares subsidy authorizations and will be in a status of “participating, but not yet rated,” until YoungStar staff are able to complete an initial rating.

Who from Shine Early Learning will be working with my program in the future?

Currently, Shine Early Learning is building a local, Wisconsin team of consultants, coaches, and raters. YoungStar staff will work out of local regional offices located across Wisconsin, similar to the current model. Local regional office locations have not yet been identified, but will be announced by January 1, 2023.

 

Should you have any further questions in the meantime, please contact youngstar@wisconsin.gov