Jo-Ann Fabric and Craft announced today that it is expanding its Teacher Rewards discount program to include family child care providers.
This is a big victory for the family child care field!
Effective January 16, 2011 their program will include “all certified, credentialed and licensed educators: daycare, preschool, home school, K-12 and post-secondary.”
Previously, only K-12 and home school teachers were eligible for their 15% discount program. To obtain the discount child care providers must show their current license or certification issued by their state along with a state-issued photo ID. This new policy also includes teachers at child care centers, Head Start, and other early education programs.
This controversy began two weeks ago when Jacqueline Crocker, an NAFCC accredited family child care provider posted on Jo-Ann’s Facebook page: “Would you please consider extending the teacher appreciation discounts to preschool teachers as well?”
This posting launched a social media campaign in the family child care field. Over 60 child care providers posted comments on Jo-Ann’s Facebook page urging them to change its policy. Child care providers also voiced their opinions on a Linkedin child care group, child care forums, as well as on Facebook, and Twitter. My social media consultant wrote about this on her blog which generated additional attention. I wrote two blog posts here and here about the controversy and all 99 votes on my blog poll wanted this change. Others wrote letters to Jo-Ann, including NAFCC and myself.
Jo-Ann’s announcement appeared on their Facebook page and website and within a few hours many child care providers posted their thanks. Jacqueline Crocker wrote, “Congratulations to Jo-Ann’s! You have become a corporate partner in the education of our young children. I’m heading there today.”
Others wrote, “Woo-Hoo! So excited thank you so much, every discount is valued so much!” “Thank you Jo-Ann’s. Thanks for listening to some VERY VALID points made about the importance of the earliest childhood educators and counting us in the Teacher’s Reward Program!”
My thanks to all the child care providers who took time to express themselves and stand up for their profession! You made a difference.
Tom Copeland – www.tomcopelandblog.com
Image credit: www.joann.com