Updated: Apr 25
Douglas County is amid a child care crisis, with over 300 Early Childcare professionals necessary to fill the 3,000 placements needed to meet local demand. Low pay and little support in the Early Childhood industry have created a lack of students attending Early Childhood programs.
On April 18th, 2023, President Joe Biden signed an executive order to improve access to affordable and high-quality child care for families across the United States. This executive order includes several provisions that could benefit families in Douglas County and the providers who serve them.
Biden's order will provide significant funding for local care providers, including Community Children's Center. This funding will help to support the centers in providing high-quality care and education for children, including hiring and retaining qualified staff, purchasing necessary supplies and equipment, and making essential improvements to the center's facilities.
Secondly, the executive order includes measures to increase access to child care for low-income families, which will help families pay for child care, streamline the application process, and make it easier for families to access these subsidies.
Finally, the executive order includes measures to support child care workers. Increasing pay will help attract and retain high-quality staff at Community Children's Center and other local providers, ensuring children receive the best care and education.
Placing children in care improves the outcome for the entire community. Businesses have more access to workers, providers can thrive and continue their education and training, and children receive a stronger start in learning and play, which can break cycles of poverty and increase physical and mental health outcomes.
The signing of this order could help close the gap in child care coverage, allow more parents to return to work, and help increase the quality of Early Childhood education in our community.
Community Children's Center seeks to bridge the gap in affordable, available, and accessible care in Douglas County, Kansas. Additional information can be found on our website: communitychildrenks.org.