When Child Care Partnership YoungStar Technical Consultant (TC) Kristy Prunty was assigned to provider Jean Stage’s child care program, Play To Learn Child Care Center, Jean was familiar with the YoungStar process and had an ongoing professional relationship with Child Care Partnership. She has been in in-home child care provider for almost 18 years and had previous technical consultation experiences through Child Care Partnership. Her program also took part in Active Early 2.0 working with Child Care Partnership, and Jean took provider trainings through their agency. But with Kristy came a brand new perspective on the program, including an innovative approach to how Jean tracked her program budget— something she has never particularly enjoyed.
“Kristy was able to present things that made sense and fit into my world,” said Jean, referring to budgeting practices. “I just could not find something that would work, that would make sense, and she did.”
After meeting Jean for the first time and discussing the budgeting process with her, Kristy brought back some of the YoungStar templates and budgeting materials to work through together.
“I tried to explain it to her in a way that would be applicable to her life,” stated Kristy, who encouraged Jean to begin with budgeting for something she desired in her personal life. “Once I connected it with something she tangibly wanted…I think it made more sense to her and got her motivated to do it.”
Jean said that the new approach to tracking her budget on a monthly basis has allowed her to “simplify life exponentially.”
In addition to budgeting, Kristy and Jean are working on portfolios and completed a mock Environmental Rating Scale (ERS). Both Kristy and Jean emphasized the value of their technical consultation.
“It’s always nice to have a fresh set of eyes,” said Kristy. “[TCs] are there to support every provider as much as we can and help them with what they already have…It’s not us coming in to say you have to do this and this.”
As a veteran child care provider, Jean admits that she initially thought she had nothing new to learn through technical consultation. Now she emphasizes that there “certainly is.” TCs can show you ideas and strategies you may not have thought of and can “get those creative juices flowing.”
“Kristy was amazing,” said Jean. “I can’t say enough good things about her.”
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