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A New Year: The Outlook for Child Care Legislation and Funding

by Eric Karolak
January/February 2010
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Article Link: https://www.childcareexchange.com/article/a-new-year-the-outlook-for-child-care-legislation-and-funding/5019138/

January begins a new year — a new calendar, New Year's resolutions, and new prospects for your family and your child care center or program. In the world of public policy, January 2010 finds us 'in the middle' — the middle of the federal fiscal (or budget) year, the middle of most states' fiscal years, and the middle of the 111th Congress.

"Begin at the beginning . . . "

If this is the 'middle,' you might say last January was the beginning. ­Washington welcomed a new Congress and a new Administration, which quickly set about grappling with the economy. The Administration moved boldly to prioritize early childhood education in the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) of 2009, the 'stimulus bill' intended to jolt the economy out of its tailspin.

ARRA included more than $5 billion in funding for early childhood education programs, including $2 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant, which states use to provide sub-sidies for low-income families and to fund quality initiatives. Securing funding for child care in the stimulus was a major accomplishment.

Parents can't work without child care, and federal stimulus funding made a huge impact in many states last year and continues to do so. ...

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