In his 2013 State of the Union address, President Barack Obama made a historic pledge to provide universal, high-quality pre-K education to our nation’s children. He chose to make this one of his administration’s priorities with good reason: Early childhood education has myriad benefits, including better, more equitable long-term outcomes for children of divergent economic backgrounds. Moreover, investments in these programs help cultivate a future workforce, secure long-term economic competitiveness, and develop our nation’s future leaders. Universal high-quality pre-K and child care would also throw a much-needed raft to families across America that are struggling to stay afloat while footing costly child care bills, missing work to provide care, or sending their children—our nation’s future innovators and workforce—to low-quality care centers.
Independent studies suggest that good daycare for non-infants is not harmful.[57] In some cases, good daycare can provide different experiences than parental care does, especially when children reach two and are ready to interact with other children. Bad daycare puts the child at physical, emotional and attachment risk. Higher quality care was associated with better outcomes. Children in higher quality childcare had somewhat better language and cognitive development during the first 4½ years of life than those in lower quality care. They were also somewhat more cooperative than those who experienced lower quality care during the first 3 years of life.

In almost half of all states, the cost of child care exceeds the average rent payment, meaning that too many families with young children end up struggling to make ends meet. In 2011, the latest year for which data are available, the average family with a working mother and a child under age 5 that made child care payments spent nearly 10 percent of its total family income on child care. While that may not sound like an overwhelming burden, it ends up amounting to nearly a quarter—22.5 percent—of married mothers’ earnings, and more than a quarter—26.1 percent—of never-married mothers’ incomes. (see Table 1)
The costs of child care are even more extreme for younger mothers. The average age when mother’s first give birth in the United States is 25.7 years, meaning that half of new mothers are under the age of 26 when they have their first child. Not surprisingly, younger mothers tend to have lower incomes: By virtue of their age, they have less job tenure and are more likely than older mothers to still be completing their education. But this means that mothers under age 25 with a young child who are paying for child care end up spending a staggering one-third—33 percent—of their income on care because they typically earn less. (see Table 1) It is critical that these women have the opportunity to finish their education and gain job experience, but child care expenses can make that a daunting prospect.
Not all child day care programs in Virginia are required to be licensed. A child day care program in Virginia refers to a regularly operating service arrangement for children where, during the absence of a parent or guardian, a person or organization has agreed to assume responsibility for the supervision, protection, and well-being of a child under the age of 13 for less than a twenty-four-hour period.
Do you want your child to have fun, engaging opportunities that support continued learning and personal growth outside of school? Seattle Parks and Recreation, in partnership with Associated Recreation Council offers programs that provide children with opportunities to develop socially, emotionally, and physically. We work in partnership with local schools to make sure your child's educational experience is constantly being enriched. Our trained staff works daily to offer activities in areas such as: arts and culture, environmental stewardship, health and fitness, academic support, and more.

More specifically, further research indicates that children being cared for by siblings or similarly-aged children (a trend more commonly seen in agriculturally-based cultural communities) have certain psychological and developmental effects on those being cared for. These effects include but are not limited to: mother-child attachment, emergence of childhood developmental stages, formation of playgroups, development of social responsibility, sex differences, personality differences, cognition, and motivation and performance in the classroom.[2]
Due to social pressure, parents of sick children in childcare may be willing to give unnecessary medical care to their children when advised to do so by childcare workers and even if it is against the advice of health care providers.[40] In particular, children in childcare are more likely to take antibiotics than children outside of childcare.[40]

Some jurisdictions require licensing or certification. Parents may also turn to independent rating services, or rely on recommendations and referrals. Some places develop voluntary quality networks, for example in Australia most childcare services are part of a national Quality Assurance system. Some places require caregivers to take classes in pediatric CPR and first aid. Most countries have laws relating to childcare, which seek to keep children safe and prevent and punish child abuse. Such laws may add cost and complexity to childcare provision and may provide tools to help ensure quality childcare.
Using part of a family’s total income is a second but equally problematic option for securing child care. In recent years the costs of care have skyrocketed, placing a disproportionate burden on families’ budgets. The fact is, for millions of families across the United States, paying for high-quality private child care is an economic impossibility.

Spain provides paid maternity leave of 16 weeks with 30-50% of mothers returning to work (most full-time) after this[citation needed], thus babies 4 months of age tend to be placed in daycare centers. Adult-infant ratios are about 1:7-8 first year and 1:16-18 second year.[citation needed] Public preschool education is provided for most children aged 3–5 years in "Infantil" schools which also provide primary school education.[citation needed]

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Choosing child care is an important decision. You can learn about choices in these short Child Care Options videos. Safe and positive child care sets the stage for healthy growth and development. It takes time, patience and understanding of what to look for when selecting child care. You know the needs of your child and family.However, you may need assistance in matching those needs to available resources. That is why OCFS is proud to share with you the supports that we have put in place to assist you in making this important decision.

Some companies have improved their child-care policies. Earlier this month, Starbucks SBUX, +2.77%  said it would offer 10 subsidized back-up child care days annually to workers, meant to help staffers who find themselves in a jam when care arrangements fall apart. The company is teaming up with Care.com so that workers can pay a dollar an hour for backup care, or $5 for a day’s stay at in-center child care.
In addition to the positive long-term impacts that high-quality preschool and child care have on children and the economy, these programs provide important benefits to working parents, especially working mothers. The prohibitively high costs of private child care and the dearth of quality, accessible public providers means that parents are often left to choose between the lesser of two evils: low-quality care or forgoing needed pay to stay at home and care for a child themselves.
Plato, according to Elaine Hoffman Baruch, around 394 B.C., argued that a system of child care would free women to participate in society.[46] Among the early English authors to devote a book to child care in the modern sense was Elizabeth Dawbarn (The Rights of Infants, or... Nursing of Infants, 1805).[47] Day care, daycare,[48][49] child day care, or childcare is the care of a child during the day by a person other than the child's legal guardians, typically performed by someone outside the child's immediate family. Day care is typically an ongoing service during specific periods, such as the parents' time at work.

At home, care is typically provided by nannies, au pairs, or friends and family.[4] The child is watched inside their own home which could expose them to outside children and illnesses. Depending on the number of children in the home, the children utilizing in-home care could enjoy the greatest amount of interaction with their caregiver, in turn forming a close bond. There are no required licensing or background checks for in-home care, making parental vigilance essential in choosing an appropriate caregiver. Nanny and au pair services provide certified caregivers and the cost of in-home care is the highest of childcare options per child, though a household with many children may find this the most convenient and affordable option. Many nannies study towards childcare qualifications. This means they are trained to create a safe and stimulating environment for your child to enjoy and thrive in. Typically, au pairs or nannies provide more than routine child care, often providing assistance with daily household activities which include running errands, shopping, doing laundry, fixing meals, and cleaning the house.

Australia has a large child care industry,[73] however in many locations (especially in inner-city suburbs of large cities and in rural areas) the availability is limited and the waiting periods can be up to several years.[74] The Australian government's Child Care Subsidy[75] scheme provides generous assistance with child care costs, but this still leaves many families with a large out of pocket expense. The median weekly cost of centre-based long day care in 2013 was approximately A$364[76] which puts it out of the reach of lower income earners.[77]


You’ve found the most comprehensive collection of information about childcare centers in the U.S, with 122,016 licensed childcare centers and 121,278 home daycare providers. Selecting a childcare center for our children is one of the most important decisions we make as parents. It’s important to choose a preschool or home daycare to which children love to go and where safety is of the utmost concern. Please use the Quick Search box on this page to find the perfect child care solution for your family!

We are excited to be a part of the proven success of early care and education programs. Through research, services and advocacy, Child Care Services Association realizes improvements to the child care system throughout North Carolina and across the country. As a national nonprofit agency and United Way member, we are proud to be a leader and innovator in strengthening the early care and education system.
There are many types of child care programs in New York State. Quality programs provide care in a warm, safe and friendly setting. Quality programs provide ctivities that help children learn and develop. No one type of program is necessarily better that any other type of program. You are the best judge of which program will meet your needs and your child's needs. More information on the types of child care programs available can be found in the Parent's Guide to Child Care Options.

In Scotland Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Education is responsible for improving care and education for children from birth to age eighteen. This is implemented by inspections carried out by HMIE itself or by other members of inspection and review teams. Inspection reports include feedback from staff and parents as well as the inspectors, aiming to provide parents and carers information to help them decide whether a particular child care setting is providing good quality child care and meeting government standards.[26]


The benefits of high-quality pre-K and child care are enormous. It is an essential way to close the achievement gap between children of different economic backgrounds and prepare them for kindergarten, primary school, and beyond. Decades of research have also shown that investing in our children at an early age pays social, educational, and economic dividends over the course of a child’s lifetime. Children deserve access to affordable high-quality education that promotes school readiness, regardless of their family situation.
We are a childcare and preschool provider who is committed to being the top of the class for you and your children’s care and early educational experiences. Our focus is to provide an encouraging educational experience, which promotes all areas of development to assist children in becoming lifelong scholars. We strive to give parents complete peace of mind, while being seen as an exemplar of what a quality childcare and preschool center should be.
There is a great deal of empirical evidence that shows how higher child care costs have a negative impact on mothers’ employment. Mothers are more likely to leave employment and less likely to start new jobs when the costs of child care are high. It is also difficult for parents to keep their jobs when they do not have access to consistent quality child care. A study conducted by Jeffrey D. Lyons in North Carolina found that about one in four families who were on a waitlist for child care assistance either lost or had to quit their jobs while they waited for an opening.
The program that was created in 2007 became known as the Federal Daycare Programme for Working Mothers.[86] This program allowed for subsidized home and community based childcare. The one running the care centers would only have to have a training component, which consisted of a psychological test and training courses to understand the principles of childcare, before being able to open their business in which they would be given money to furnish the facility as necessary for a safe caring center to be created.[86] Another way this program was set into place was by subsidizing the care of non-profits, private for profits, or religious institutions who were based in the area of need.[86]
Only about 22 percent of children in low-income families currently receive federally subsidized child care, and while preschool enrollment has increased nationwide in recent years, the lowest-income children are the least likely to participate in preschool programs. Twenty-eight percent of 4-year-olds were enrolled in state-funded pre-K programs, and only 4 percent of 3-year-olds were similarly enrolled. Forty percent are not enrolled in any pre-K program at all. Clearly, the publicly funded services that are available are lacking, insufficient, or both.
Childcare has been on the rise in Mexico due to the increasing interest it has within the people and the effect it has on the government. This is due to the rise of urban areas in developing countries and the need to keep up with the economic development.[84] There has always been many child care services available but due to the high costs, they were mainly unavailable for the low income families.[85] Childcare became a hot topic of discussion when more women were joining the workforce and the debate of how this would affect how the children would be raised.[86] Another topic of debate is how would the women pay for these expensive services while working minimum wage jobs or having limited times they could work, so the idea of subsidizes arose.[86] In specific to the child, the topic of “street children”, how and where children should grow up, was debated, and if they should be allowed to be considered part of the street instead of a particular home.[87] This issue was of great debate because it not only affects the child but also the community the child is in, since they usually seek out public spaces for shelter, food and play.[87] Childcare is generally broken into three general categories such as governmental institutions, religious organizations, and independent agencies (such as NGOS).[87] All of these take on the same objectives which are “containment, paternalist cure approach and street education.”[87]
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