FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Los Angeles, Calif – Child360 is pleased that the May Budget Revision proposes stipends for early care and education (ECE) providers, infrastructure grants, family fee waivers, and 100,000 new subsidized child care slots for eligible families. These supports are important investments for children and families and shows that California recognizes the importance of early care and education. More than ever, this last year has shown us the essential value of early care and education both with respect to child development and as a vital economic support for the entire workforce.
During the pandemic, child care professionals kept their doors open so doctors, nurses, grocery workers, truck drivers, and other essential workers could keep our world safe and our economy afloat. They risked their health and safety to keep the world moving during a chaotic time by providing continuity of care for our littlest learners and working families. The May Revision’s early childhood investments are a critical step in the right direction but do not include the adequate financial support these early educators deserve.
The ECE workforce needs greater support. Early childhood professionals must be fairly compensated for the foundational role they play in nurturing children’s brain development and in enabling parents to work. We had hoped that the May Revise would include a long-needed reimbursement rate increase for these essential workers. We look forward to working with the Governor, the legislature and fellow ECE advocates on a budget that better recognizes the value of ECE professionals and supports working families.
Key early care and education components of the May Revision are included below:
- 100,000 new subsidized child care slots
- $83M in Proposition 64 cannabis revenues in FY 2020-21 and ongoing for 6,500 new child care slots
- $250M to provide infrastructure grants for the acquisition, construction, development, and renovation of child care facilities.
- $20M for a multi-year effort to strengthen existing quality improvement supports and systems.
- $10M for Child Care Resource & Referral Programs to strengthen their role serving as intermediaries to develop new child care facilities and capacity, and to streamline and improve data collection processes.
- $579M for:
- A third round of per-child stipends for subsidized child care and preschool providers.
- A tiered licensed provider one-time stipend (between $3,500-$6,500) based on licensing capacity.
- Family fee waivers for eligible families beginning July 1, 2021 through June 30, 2022.
- $25M for the expansion of the California Child Care Initiative Project (CCIP) to target areas such as child care deserts and build capacity of new licensed family child care homes.
- $10.6M for early childhood mental health consultation (this investment will expand the California Inclusion and Behavior Consultation project).
- 16 non-operational days for providers accepting vouchers that have to close due to COVID-related reasons beginning July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022.
- Continued hold harmless funding for child care providers that contract directly with the state, and provider reimbursement at a child’s maximum certified level of need for all providers accepting vouchers through June 30, 2022.
Universal Transitional Kindergarten (UTK)
- $900M in FY 2022-23, growing to $2.7B in FY 2024-25 to expand transitional kindergarten
- UTK would be phased in over four years with eligibility for all four year-olds by FY 2024-25
- $380M in FY 2022-23, growing to $740M in 2024-25 to provide one additional certificated or classified staff person in each TK classroom
- $250M for planning and implementation grants for LEAs
- $10M for the California Department of Education to update the Preschool Learning Foundations
“We commend the Governor for these investments that prioritize the well-being of our littlest learners; however, “California for All” should also include supports for our child care professionals. Child360 will fight to provide adequate support to the adults in young children’s lives. They deserve to be treated with dignity and respect, and they must be compensated for their vital contribution to our society. We are grateful for their heroic work and we commit to working with the legislature to ensure our system reflects their undeniable value,” says Bill Sperling, Child360 CEO.