In a year that may well stand out as a low point in our national history for extreme political brinksmanship, Nebraska legislators representing all points of the ideological spectrum took their own stand – a united one – in support of early childhood investment in 2013. Faced by a wide range of difficult budgetary decisions, the 103rd Nebraska Legislature chose to advance eight separate bills directly affecting the safety, quality and availability of early care and education programs for the state’s youngest children and their families.
Last month, CLASP released Better for Babies: A Study of State Infant and Toddler Child Care Policies documenting where state policies stand in relation to a set of key child care subsidy, licensing and quality improvement policies that support the healthy growth and development of infants and toddlers in child care settings. Data in this report were collected through a state survey, as well as from publicly available data sources. Collectively they offer a baseline of policies important for babies in child care.
The National Conference of State Legislators surveyed 21 state legislative fiscal offices on their FY 2013 state appropriations for various education programs in December 2012. Overall, state appropriations to early care and education increased slightly by $127 million (1.5 percent). Although several states continued to struggle to restore cuts from the previous years, others continued to make small but consistent increases in various early care and education budgets.
Rhode Island, the smallest state in the U.S., is a leaders among states in improving outcomes for young children and families. This year’s legislative session brought some important new victories for the state’s children...
Oregon took another major step toward the transformation of its early learning system during its 2013 legislative session. Two years ago the legislature created the Early Learning Council to take a more comprehensive look at how early childhood services are delivered, and articulate a new vision for Oregon. This session took important steps toward making that vision a reality.
A recent report by Child Trends suggests young children in military families may need additional support to help mitigate some of the risks associated with having one or both parents deployed away from the home.
The Washington Legislature wrapped up its second special session last week by passing a biennial budget that creates more opportunity for our state’s youngest learners. In a time of financial struggle, lawmakers chose to prioritize funding for improved access and quality in early learning programs.
Find out about the numbers of young, at-risk children in your state and nationally by using the The Young Child Risk Calculator (YCRC). This recently updated tool, available from The National Center for Children in Poverty, shows that nearly one in five children in the US faces multiple risks that increase their chance of poor health, development, and school outcomes.
Home visiting—which matches parents with trained providers who share information and offer support during pregnancy and throughout their child’s earliest years—received strong bipartisan support in state capitols during the 2013 legislative session.
More than 10,000 Michigan four-year-olds and their families will have the opportunity to participate in high-quality preschool next year thanks to a visionary expansion of the state’s Great Start Readiness Program (GSRP).