Access to affordable, high-quality child care is critical for North Carolina’s working families. It provides children with the social and emotional skills they need to enter kindergarten ready to learn. It also provides parents with the ability to keep their jobs. Voters across the political spectrum overwhelmingly support increased access to high-quality early childhood education programs. Voters from every political party rank early childhood ahead of tax relief, creating jobs, or health care costs.
High Costs are Putting Quality Care Out of Reach
High-quality prekindergarten programs can improve school readiness, with the greatest gains among high-risk children. Unfortunately, the high cost of child care makes it nearly impossible for many working families to afford.
In North Carolina:
- More than 50,000 children are on the waiting list for child care assistance1;
- Married parents of two children at the poverty line pay 70.7% of their annual income for child care2; and
- In 2017, one year of infant care ($9,254) cost more than one year of tuition at UNC ($9,005).3
North Carolinians of all ages and political stripes recognize the huge benefits that good early childhood programs bring our communities: higher wages for parents, and greater school success for children. Early childhood is a singular opportunity for legislators and the Governor to reach across the aisle and work together on one of the most important issues in our state.
In 2019, legislators can commit to providing all North Carolina families with access to affordable, high-quality care – but they need to hear from you!
How can I help?
Ask your candidates for legislative office the following question via email, phone, or in-person at a candidate forum:
Voters across the political spectrum overwhelmingly support increased access to high-quality early childhood education programs. Do you support increasing the state’s investment with a down-payment in 2019 to make high-quality child care affordable for all North Carolina families?
- NCDHHS, Division of Child Development and Early Education, May 2018 Subsidy Expenditure Report
- Child Care Aware of America, 2017 Cost of Child Care NC State Fact Sheet
- Child Care Aware of America, 2017 Cost of Child Care NC State Fact Sheet; UNC Finance and Operations, Academic Year 2017-2018 Tuition and Fees