In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and Safer-At-Home Public Health Orders, LACOE’s Early Learning Outcomes (ELO) team quickly responded to support delegate agencies to transition to a Distance and Virtual Learning (DVL) environment. At the same time, comprehensive services teams—health, nutrition, mental health, disabilities, and family services—were doing the same: supporting LACOE and delegate agency (DA) children, families, and staff during their transition to remote services.  

Teams collaborated on the “HSEL Responds to COVID-19” document that was released as staff and families transitioned. This document continues to provide timely and locally-driven updates and resources related to the pandemic and Safer-At-Home orders. It is reviewed at biweekly DA directors meetings.

Each of the comprehensive services teams developed DVL addendums to their service area manuals, which contain guidance to DAs to continue providing quality services timely and safely during DVL and remote services. Examples include: continuing to provide meals through Grab-N-Go meal distribution, supporting families on age-appropriate screenings and immunizations that may have been delayed while families stayed safely at home, and ensuring agencies maintain processes to communicate and collaborate across service areas and with community partners and resources. Such partnerships have resulted in families receiving diapers and other essentials donated by Baby2Baby, a continuation of mental health and other service area referrals and consultations for families in need, and continued support for children with disabilities.

In collaboration with the Workforce Development and Professional Learning (WDPL) team, service area coordinator meetings and trainings have continued in virtual formats, ensuring teams stay connected with their DA counterparts. Each of the service area teams participated on a workgroup with LACOE and DA staff to develop the LACOE HSEL Reopening Framework, which provides DAs with comprehensive, evidence-based, and locally-driven guidance to safely reopen their centers.