Sonoma County Office of Education

Child Care Planning Council

Sonoma CARES

Sonoma CARES LogoSonoma CARES Plus is a professional development program designed to improve the quality of early learning programs by focusing on education, preparation, and retention of an effective and diverse workforce. The program provides guidance, support, and a stipend reward to child care professionals. Please contact us at (707) 524-2639 to learn how you can participate.

Administered by the Child Care Planning Council (CCPC) of Sonoma County, the CARES program incorporates funding from First 5 Sonoma County, First 5 California, and the California Department of Education’s Staff Retention Program (AB 212).

CARES Plus Snapshot, 2013-2014 (pdf)
CARES Plus Snapshot, 2012-2013 (pdf)
CARES Plus Snapshot, 2011-2012 (pdf)
First 5 Sonoma County’s Summary of CARES Accomplishments (pdf)
Sonoma CARES 5-Year Snapshot (pdf)
Focused CARES 2010-2011 Snapshot (pdf)

Gateway to Quality Mini-Grants

Gateway to Quality First 5 Sonoma County’s Gateway to Quality Mini-Grant Program is open to child care providers and early childhood educators who have previously received a First 5 Sonoma County mini-grant.

The program supports child care providers who have successfully completed an academic course (or its equivalent) in the Harms-Clifford environment rating scales (ECERS, FCCRS, or ITERS) and who are working to improve the quality of their child care environments. Mini-grants awarded through this program must be used for materials and equipment, facility improvements or renovations, and other quality improvement projects that directly improve scoring on the environment rating scales.

Validators will collaborate with applicants to ensure that items requested address environment rating scale improvement. The Child Care Planning Council administers the validation component of the mini-grant program.

Intent to Apply Due Dates
April 15 and October 15 — Get First 5 Intent to Apply Form

Gateway to Quality Annual Report, 2013-2014 (pdf)
Gateway to Quality Annual Report, 2012-2013 (pdf)
Gateway to Quality Annual Report, 2011-2012 (pdf)
Gateway to Quality 3-Year Report, 2008-2011 (pdf)


Child Development Training Consortium (CDTC) | (209) 572-6080
Commission on Teaching Credentialing | (888) 921-2682
Community Child Care Council of Sonoma County (4Cs) | (707) 544-3077
Financial Aid, Grants & Scholarships (pdf)
River to Coast Children’s Services | (707) 869-3613
Santa Rosa Junior College | (707) 524-4315
Sonoma State University | (707) 664-3115
Transcript Evaluation (pdf)


  • Susy Marrón, Early Education Program Specialist
    (707) 524-2639,
Fax: (707) 524-2666

—Sonoma CARES Plus is an Upstream Investments Tier 2 Program—
—Gateway to Quality is an Upstream Investments Tier 3 Program—

Tier2 Tier2 Sonoma Upsteam Investments