There were major cuts to funding for state-run child care and preschool programs for low- and moderate-income families after the recession. Funding has slowly eeked back up to 2007-08 levels, but demand still outweighs supply. Kristin Schumacher of the California Budget & Policy Center told us restoring this should be a top priority. “We know that if we provide families with resources, such as access to subsidized child care, that they’re able to work and maintain employment because they know that their kids are in a safe and stable and consistent environment that they can rely on while they go to work. That’s really important because we want to boost familles’ resources and we know that really benefits kids in the long run.”
And while children’s advocates and others appreciate the incremental progress made under Brown — for example, creating and then expanding a state earned income tax credit — Chris Hoene, executive director of the California Budget & Policy Center, said there’s more to be done. “This governor has made strides, but we’re still not back to where we were before the Great Recession,” Hoene said. “I would expect (the Legislature) to see whether a Gov. Newsom is perhaps willing to go a bit further than Gov. Brown was in general.”
This Fact Sheet shows that even though funding for preschool and child care in the state budget has incrementally increased for five years in a row, the availability of subsidized child care and preschool falls far short of the need for it.
Kristin Schumacher, policy analyst for the California Budget & Policy Center, said in a policy brief this month that local funding could help address the lack of state investment for low-income families. Schumacher suggested counties follow the lead of Alameda and San Francisco. Both counties initiated ballot measures, which were put to voters this month, to fund subsidized child care and early education slots to address the shortages in their areas.
As Californians are often reminded, the state is the fifth largest economy in the world and is currently enjoying a recovery from the Great Recession. However, with one of the highest child poverty rates in the country, California’s good fortune is not widely enjoyed. Under the Supplemental Poverty Measure, which accounts for the high cost […]