Child care, or otherwise known as daycare, is the care and supervision of a child or multiple children at a time, whose age ranges from six weeks to thirteen years. Child care is the action or skill of looking after children by a day-care center, nannies, babysitter, teachers or other providers. Child care is a broad topic that covers a wide spectrum of professionals, institutions, contexts, activities, social and cultural conventions. Early child care is an equally important and often overlooked component of child development. Child care providers can be children's first teachers, and therefore play an integral role in systems of early childhood education. Quality care from a young age can have a substantial impact on the future successes of children. The main focus of childcare is on the development of the child, whether that be mental, social, or psychological.[1]
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.
In England, childcare is inspected and regulated by OFSTED (previously this was administered by Local Authority Social Services). Care for children under five is split into Childcare on Domestic Premises which is Childminding and Daycare. In the UK being a ‘Childminder’ is a protected title and can only be used by registered professionals. Registered Childminders are trained, insured and qualified in Pediatric First Aid. They comply/administer/work with The Early Years Foundation Stage EYFS and have the same responsibilities for education as nurseries and reception classes. They generally work from their own homes and are always self-employed setting their own terms and conditions. The basic numbers of children that childminders can care for is 6 children under 8 years of age; of these children, 3 may be under 5 and of these 1 may be under 1. These numbers include the childminder's own children (although the childminder’s children will not be included in the childminding ‘Certificate’). Some childminders work with either childminding assistants or with co-childminders, which often increases the number of children that can be cared for and individual childminders can request a ‘variation’ which may increase the children that they care for particularly for ‘continuity of care’ or for twins. There is a professional body – the Professional Association for Childcare & Early Years (formerly the National Childminding Association), which “Promotes and supports quality child-minding expertise” and provides information for Childminders and parents. London has greater pressures on childcare provision than other English regions. A recent study by London’s Poverty Profile found the level of childcare provision in London is lower than the England average. In London, there are 4.4 children aged under 8 per childcare place, compared to the England average of 3.9.[24]
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Parents are typically the legal owners of the non-profit day care and will routinely provide consulting services in areas in which they are professionally qualified (for example accounting, legal advice, or human resources) for free. (There are some non-profits not operated by parents, but by a board of directors made up of community representatives who want what is good for the children.)
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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.
Evidence from other countries shows that child care subsidies increase women’s labor force participation, help them obtain more stable jobs, and increase their income. While interventions in the United States have been much more modest by international standards, there is ample evidence showing that child care assistance helps working moms. Families who receive child care support are more likely to be employed and have longer employment spells that families who do not receive support. The effects are particularly strong for single mothers, who are nearly 40 percent more likely to maintain employment over two years than those who do not have help paying for child care.
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]
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