Child-care subsidies: Do they impact the quality of care children experience?
The federal child-care subsidy program represents one of the government's largest investments in early care and education, but little is known about whether it increases low-income children's access to higher quality child care. This study used newly available nationally representative data on 4-year-old children (N = 750) to investigate whether subsidy receipt elevates child-care quality. Results indicate that subsidy recipients use higher quality care compared to nonrecipients who use no other publicly funded care, but lower quality care compared to nonrecipients who instead use Head Start or public pre-k. Findings suggest that subsidies may have the potential to enhance care quality but that parents who use subsidies are not accessing the highest quality care available to low-income families. (author abstract)
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Child Care Subsidies: Who Uses Them and What Do They Buy Low-Income Families and Children?
Administration for Children and Families/OPRE Projects