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Issues and Advocacy

2016 Parent Survey

In Summer of 2016, you helped us by responding to a parent survey which was part of a state-wide effort to collect data on child care needs in different communities. You can view the report of results here.

Above all else, one important fact remains: Quality Child Care Matters. 


2016 Public Policy Agenda 

All families and children deserve access to high quality early childhood and after-school programs. 

To accomplish this we must invest: 

$100 million in additional subsidy funding to reach an additional 13,000 children in New York, who live in income-eligible families and are waiting for subsidies.

$90 million to support New York’s implementation of the Child Care and Development Block Grant Act (CCDBG) requirements which promote children’s safety and well-being and improved child care program quality.

$69.2 million to increase Advantage After School funding to 2007-08 levels where the peak number of at-risk children were provided with programming that closed the student achievement gap.


Why does this investment matter?

  • Child care subsidies make it possible for parents with low income jobs to work.  Families with access to child care subsidies work more hours, have a higher likelihood of being successfully employed, and an increased earning potential.  Without subsidy, the high cost of child care (as high as $14,000 per child per year) is out of reach for the majority of low income workers, as the average full-time minimum wage worker makes only $18,720 a year.(1) (4)
  • High quality child care and after-school programs help ensure that children will gain the thinking and social skills needed to be successful in school and in life.  Children in high quality child care are more successful in school, need fewer special education services, are more likely to graduate from high school, attend college, and earn more money as an adult.(3)
  • Child care and after-school programs are an important small business sector in our economy.  The new licensing requirements cannot be absorbed by programs that currently can only afford to pay teachers and caregivers minimum wage.  Money spent on child care and after-school boosts our local economy.  For every dollar spent on child care and after-school, an additional $2.06 of activity is generated in the local economy. (2) 


What will this investment do locally?

There are over 1,500 regulated child care and after-school providers that can serve over 30,000 children in Erie County each day.  Investments in the Child Care Development Block Grant (CCDBG) will  ensure that:

  • families currently receiving child care subsidy keep that support;
  • an additional 10% of families in Erie County will receive child care subsidy support; (8)
  • increased state licensing changes targeting local child care programs are fully funded;
  • increased funding for quality initiatives, such as: child care resource and referral agencies, universal developmental screenings, and a New York State quality improvement rating system; and
  • children are safe, healthy, and thriving in high quality child care and after-school programs!

All children and families deserve access to high quality education, health, and human services. 

To accomplish this we must invest:

$150 million to expand Pre-Kindergarten for high need three- and four- year-olds, building on the State’s 2015 program.

$37.8 million in maternal, infant, and early childhood home visiting to adequately fund a continuum of supports and services for families. That include Healthy Families New York, Nurse-Family Partnership, Parents as Teachers,  and Parent-Child Home Program.

$23 million to expand implementation of QUALITYstarsNY, the quality rating and improvement system currently being piloted to improve the quality of child care programs and early learning experiences for children across NYS. 

Restore Early Intervention (EI) reimbursement rates by at least 5% and require health insurance companies to contribute to the cost of EI so that young children can receive high-quality services from qualified professionals.


Why do these investments matter?

These investments improve educational and life outcomes for children and families by targeting those at most risk.   The cycle of poverty is broken by giving vulnerable children and families the health, family, and learning supports systems needed to lead to future success.  Comprehensive and coordinated systems of care for young children and families yield the best return on investment with the largest gain in academic performance, high school graduation rates, and lifetime earning potential.(3)


What will these investments do locally?

Investments in these early childhood services will ensure that:

  • The 75% of children with disabilities currently not identified before they enter school are screened and receiving services starting at birth. (5)
  • Hundreds of children and families will have access to home visiting and early intervention services that will increase health and learning outcomes for young children. (1)
  • 90% of child care programs in Erie County not currently receiving QUALITYstarsNY funding can improve the quality of care and learning for thousands of local children. (1)


Printable version


(1) Winning Beginning NY (2016). Executive Agenda 2016-2017.

(2) Cornell University ILR School (2006).  Buffalo Child Care Means Business:  Full Study Report

(3) Federal Reserve bank of Minneapolis (2006).  A Proposal for Achieving High Returns on Early Childhood Development.  

(4) NACCRRA (2013).  Parents and the High Cost of Child Care

(5) Ounce of Prevention Fund (2006).  Incorporating Comprehensive Developmental Screening into Programs and Services for Young Children

(6) RAND (2005).  Proven Benefits of Early Childhood Interventions.  

(7) CCFS, 2/2016

(8) Poverty Status by County Table B17010, American fact Finder