Care 4 Kids - Children Enrolled

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Why This Indicator Matters

As Connecticut's primary childcare subsidy program, Care4Kids helps low-income families afford high-quality childcare. Access to high-quality, reliable childcare is essential to the success of working families. Nationwide, childcare is often the single-largest expense for families with young children, and is out of the financial reach for many working families who do not receive state or federal child care subsidies. In Connecticut, the Care4Kids program is particularly crucial, as the state had the 6th highest average cost for infant care in the nation in 2016[i]. The average annual cost of childcare reached $19,521 in 2016, which is equivalent to 28% of the household survival budget for a family of four in the state.[ii] The high burden of child care costs is particularly problematic for families living below 100% of the Federal Poverty line, and for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) families, whose earnings are above the FPL yet still fall short of a basic cost of living threshold.[iii] Without safe, reliable child care, parents are either unable to contribute to Connecticut’s workforce and achieve financial stability or are forced to place their children in unreliable, or even dangerous, care settings. There is a very strong correlation between race and family poverty in Connecticut, where half of all children subsidized under the Care4Kids program are located in just eight cities, and two-thirds of Care4Kids participants enrollees live in just 16 of Connecticut's 169 towns.



[i] Child care costs in the United States. (2016, April). Retrieved January 09, 2018, from http://www.epi.org/child-carecosts-in-the-united-states/#/CT

[ii] Parents and the High Cost of Child Care (Rep.). (2017). Retrieved January 9, 2018, from the Child Care Aware America website: https://usa.childcareaware.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/12/2017_CCA_High_Cost_Report_FINAL.pdf.

[iii]  How Child Care Costs Impact Many Connecticut Families. (2016). Retrieved January 09, 2018, from the United Ways of Connecticut website: http://alice.ctunitedway.org/childcare/

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Definitions:

This indicator reports the total number of children enrolled in Care4Kids, the state’s primary child care subsidy program for low-income families. This includes toddlers, pre-school, and school age children, enrolled in regulated, exempt, and unregulated child care. Note that these figures represent distinct counts, and are not summaries of the publicly available monthly enrollment totals.

Data Source:

Connecticut Office of Early Childhood, Unpublished data. Prepared by the United Way of Connecticut, Fiscal Years 2013, 2015, and 2017.

Office of Early Childhood, Fiscal Years 2010, 2012, and 2014.

Connecticut Department of Social Services, Bureau of Assistance Programs, unpublished data, Fiscal Years 2000, 2005, 2007, and 2009.

Footnotes:

Counts under 6­excluding zeroeswere suppressed by the Office of Early Childhood before delivery.

* = suppressed count
NA = Not Available  (Due to collection errors, some data from 2010 is unavailable. Data from 2015 and 2017 were not aggregated due to suppressed counts.)