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Thank you, Monica, Frances and James, for your thoughts. Frances, yes, we need local and state-level investment, too. That is unfolding differently across the country. The video I did with Heidi Hagel Braid dives into that a bit. The questions of continued federal funding are happening now. With the Child Care Stabilization Grants, much of the implementation was left up to the states, so unlike a lot of federal funds for special education, for example, it became, in essence, state funds. And yes, always, appropriate pay for the very important work early childhood practitioners provide. As the piece above says, "It is time to value care workers and early childhood educators for the crucial services they provide." For me, fair wages are an essential part of that.
Monica, thanks for diving in. The essential role early care plays in bolstering both health and economics is undeniable. And that is only a small part of what our early childhood workforce provides.
I couldn't agree more. our elected officials need to connect the need for quality Childcare with a vibrant economy and young people's success.
I certainly believe that the federal government needs to increase funding for childcare. However, I believe the states and local governments should also increase their investments. The state should provide money from the general fund, much as they do for schools. Funding just from the federal government has obvious risks (i.e. subject to unreasonable and inappropriate "guidelines".) I am also not inclined to support any effort to increase funding unless it is accompanied by clear and equal pay with k-12 teachers for everyone involved in the field (and not just those with college degrees).
Child Care as Health Care: The article's central theme is that child care should be considered an integral part of healthcare. This viewpoint suggests that investing in child care is not just a matter of social policy but a fundamental aspect of public health.
Overall, the article argues for a shift in perspective regarding child care, viewing it as a societal responsibility with profound implications for health and well-being. It calls for short-term and long-term actions to address the current childcare challenges and promote the health and strength of families and communities.
My thoughts are in agreement with the following comments. “Childcare is Well Care! It is an essential service that supports parents, businesses, and the economy. It sustains an infrastructure that improves society's quality of life.
Childcare is not just about ensuring the health and safety of children; it is a critical service that extends beyond their well-being. It plays a vital role in expanding and enhancing the work sector, businesses, and the economy. By providing reliable and high-quality childcare services, working parents can continue contributing to the workforce, boosting businesses and the economy. Accessible and affordable childcare services also help create a more inclusive society and promote equal opportunities. Therefore, investing in childcare is an investment in our children's, and our nation's economy's future. "The early years are foundational learning years"!