To make Vermont the BEST place to raise children, we need to ensure that families have access to high-quality, affordable child care. When we achieve this mission together, we all benefit.
>>For the Children. All children are supported, grow to believe in themselves and are prepared for success in school, relationships and life.
>>For Parents. All parents are confident that their children are safe, happy and nurtured in their learning environments.
>>For the Early Educators. All early educators are valued and fairly compensated for their expertise.
>>For the Economy. Businesses have a robust workforce and Vermont's economy grows.
To accelerate change that leads us to our vision and mission of high-quality, affordable child care, we’re asking legislators to make a Core Commitment to Vermont’s children!
Three Policy Actions:
1. Expand Income Eligibility. Move eligibility cap from 300% of the federal poverty level (FPL) to 350% of FPL.
2. Increase Financial Assistance. Increase financial assistance levels so that families earning up to 200% of FPL ($50,200 for a family of four) receive full assistance, and adjust the sliding scale so that no qualifying family receives less than 25% financial assistance.
3. Make Rates Current. Align preschool and after-school reimbursement rates from 2010 to 2017 Vermont Market Rate Survey findings (how the state determines what the cost of care is) and commit to adjusting rates annually.
Three Policy Actions:
1. Launch a Student Loan Repayment Program. Establish a loan repayment program for new early educators working as a lead teacher in a regulated child care or early learning program.
2. Fund Scholarships. Support the Vermont Association for the Education of Young Children’s request for funding to expand Vermont’s T.E.A.C.H. Early Childhood scholarship program, which has proven success. It provides full scholarships and other supports to individuals currently working in early care and learning programs who are seeking an associate’s degree in early childhood education or individuals with a bachelor’s degree who are seeking early childhood teacher licensure or endorsement.
3. Provide Tax Credits. Establish refundable tax credits for those working in regulated early care and learning programs to address the early educator wage gap in the state.
The Policy Action:
Offer refundable tax credits for employers for the next six tax years to help businesses launch, sustain or grow child care supports for their employees and provide direct financial support to Vermont’s early care and learning system.
Vermonters Speak to this Issue
Vermont parents who are affected by the high costs of quality child care and the chronic underfunding of CCFAP spoke to us via Small Talk.
Marianna, a parent from Marshfield, talks about her family's struggles to make ends meet.
Selver, a parent from Shelburne, discusses the difficulties of being a single parent of two kids in child care.
Carly, Family Support at a Family Center from Wilder, talks about the struggles of families in poverty.
Anne, a parent from Wolcott, talks about the child care financial dilemma that faces many families and providers in Vermont.
Megan, a parent from East Thetford, describes how lucky her family is to get help paying for child care.
Katie, a parent from Orleans, talks about the financial struggles of child care and other bills.