Childcare in America: A Local & National Perspective
The state of our national childcare system has been shaken to its core. COVID-19 has demonstrated with certain clarity that the current way of “doing business” is not sustainable. There is a disconnect with legislators and most folks around the country who don’t realize that childcare is a business, that it is the foundation for the rest of our economy. There needs to be a new infrastructure to our childcare system that increases public investments into childcare. Sitting in Congress is the Child Care Is Essential Act, which establishes and provides $50 billion in appropriations for the Child Care Stabilization Fund to award grants to child care providers during and after the COVID-19 public health emergency.
Some childcare centers have remained open during the pandemic, most have not. As more are beginning to re-open with strict health and safety guidelines, it is becoming evident that the slim profit margins they once had are disappearing: there is the same overhead, but fewer children to offset the costs. It is simply not sustainable.
Early Childhood professionals are doing the best that they can in these tumultuous times. They are following guidelines, and caring for children, families, and staff as they return to work, all the while fearful of possibly bringing the Coronavirus back to their own families. Our Childhood professionals deserve support from our government so they can safely care for our children as parents return to work.
Please watch two news stories that look at this topic from a national perspective as well as a local perspective.
Watch as Katie Hamm, Vice-President of Early Childhood Policy with the Center for Progress, explains the crisis of our current childcare infrastructure here.
Watch as Robin Comey, Director of the Branford Early Childhood Collaborative talks of the support they have been able to offer to one of their local area childcare centers, See Us Grow, as they re-open their center after state-mandated shut downs due to COVID-19 here.