Kids playing at daycare.

Supporting Connecticut’s Family Services

Public Sector Solutions, Children & Families


6 yearpartnership with $320M state agency supporting 215,000 Connecticut children aged 0-5 and their families

The Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC) and Social Finance maintain a lasting and evolving partnership rooted in the shared objective of improving outcomes for Connecticut families through accessible and quality programming; strong service delivery; continual system improvement; and transparent results definition, measurement, and management.

Social Finance brings strategic planning, project management, outcomes definition and tracking, data analysis, and stakeholder management to the OEC programmatic portfolio. The agency’s work centers on home visiting and early care and education, with an emphasis on outcomes-based contracting, early childhood workforce support, federal funding deployment, and results measurement.


  • Develop new funding mechanisms to reward strong service providers. 
  • Collect and use performance data to understand progress against key priorities.
  • Pilot initiatives focused on preventative health care and access to community resources.
  • Monitor progress towards achieving intended goals of the Preschool Development Grant.
  • Support strategic planning effort to reimagine a child care system that works for children, families, providers, and the Connecticut economy.
  • Provide project management for ongoing initiatives and disburse funds to eligible staff members working in child care programs to recognize the difficult and essential work that staff in child care programs perform—for children, families, and communities.

The Work

Advancing home visiting through outcomes-based initiatives, new funding, and new programs

  • Rate card development. Social Finance has collaborated with OEC to launch six outcomes rate cards, which are sets of metrics against which service providers can earn payment based on achievement. The most recent rate card, active from July 2021 through June 2023, rewarded home visiting providers with incentive payments based on various metrics, including the enrollment of people from underserved communities and people in early pregnancy, participant economic stability, and prenatal and postnatal health. Learn more.
  • Medicaid financing. To supplement existing OEC home visiting funding, Social Finance has worked with the agency to pursue Medicaid reimbursement of home visiting service delivery, allowing Connecticut to join 20+ states already using Medicaid dollars for home visiting. The work includes proposal material and planning document development for selecting home visiting models and informing initial rate setting.
  • Universal home visiting. Social Finance collaborated with OEC to design an initiative, Family Bridge, which pairs home visiting services with additional support from health workers in Greater Bridgeport. The initiative is funded through the American Rescue Plan Act, the Preschool Development Grant program, and a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) grant.

Boosting agency capacity for strategy, planning, stakeholder engagement, and workforce initiatives for early care and education

  • Blue Ribbon Panel support. Gov. Ned Lamont created the Connecticut Blue Ribbon Panel on Child Care via an executive order and tasked the body with developing a five-year strategic plan for creating an early childhood education system that works for families, providers, and the state economy. OEC is leading this work and has distributed planning across a series of working groups, including those focused on Workforce and Quality, and Systems. Social Finance is supporting these two groups, assisting with secondary research to inform strategic goals and recommendations, providing project management support, facilitating meetings with internal and external stakeholders, and creating materials for panel review. Input from early childhood education stakeholders and advisors, existing state initiatives, and national best practices will inform the final plan, which will be submitted in December 2023.
  • Workforce development. In parallel to long-term planning work, Social Finance is helping OEC implement initiatives related to workforce compensation, including the qualified workforce incentives and wage supports for early childhood educators. Throughout 2022 and into 2023, Social Finance supported a working group created to design a new wage supplements program and funded through the Wage Supports for Early Childhood Educators Initiative. This two-phase initiative provides $70 million in state funds to licensed child care centers and state-funded programs to recruit and retain educators. The second phase launched in March 2023 and will offer these same centers and programs bonuses for full-time and part-time educators hired, as well as bonuses for hiring educators listed on the OEC Professional Registry or working in communities that rank high on the CDC’s Social Vulnerability Index.
  • External steering committee. Social Finance helps convene the OEC External Steering Committee, comprised of OEC leadership, parents, early childhood education advocates, stakeholders, and providers. The committee provides feedback on existing OEC initiatives, offers proactive input on initiatives in development, and amplifies information and questions to stakeholder networks. Social Finance supports the group by preparing for and facilitating meetings and coordinating stakeholder engagement.

Assessing Preschool Development Grant program progress and results

  • Grant impact assessment. Social Finance is managing OEC’s program performance evaluation of activities funded through a three-year $27 million Federal Preschool Development Grant. In 2022, Social Finance assessed 26 district initiatives covered by the grant, measuring and reporting the agency’s progress toward strengthening agency operations, developing the early childhood workforce, improving early childhood services and equity, and uplifting parent voice and participation. This work continues in 2023 with an assessment of programs funded through a separate $3.9 million federal planning grant.



Participant Stories

Mother little child holding hands walking in a grass field at sunset

For Jazmin, a Home Visitor Helped Jumpstart Her Career

Jazmin* knew her home visitor—matched through a home visiting program funded by the Connecticut Office of Early Childhood (OEC)—would help her navigate pregnancy, birth, and early parenting. What she didn’t foresee was that her home visitor would also help her achieve her career goals.

*Name changed for privacy reasons

The Results

6Rate cards launched since 2018, which tie a portion of OEC’s $20M in annual spending for home visiting to outcomes

$13MIn funding to implement universal home visiting in Greater Bridgeport over several years

$70MDisbursed to educators through the Wage Supports for Early Childhood Initiative

Social Finance’s teams collaborate with agency staff in a way that encourages thinking, innovation, and implementation. Their innovative ideas from their research and work with other places have helped CT get projects over the finish line.

Beth Bye

Commissioner, Connecticut Office of Early Childhood

Beth Bye headshot
The partnership with Social Finance has provided OEC the opportunity to implement multiple iterations of the outcomes rate card and realign and renew the agency’s vision for the evidence-based home visiting program.

Ashley McAuliffe

Division Director, Home Visiting, Connecticut Office of Early Childhood

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