Licensed child care in Maine

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Why This Indicator Matters

Parents depend on having reliable safe child care in order to go to work. Furthermore, quality child care is essential to the healthy social and emotional development of children. Brain research has shown the first few years of a child's life are critical to the development of a child's ability to learn and be successful. Quality child care is of particular benefit to low-income children who may lack opportunities for enrichment at home.

In Maine, the number of licensed family child cares has decreased from 1,149 in 2012 to 774 in 2021, a 33% decrease. Since December 2019, just before the start of the pandemic, the number of family child decreased from 865 to 774, or an 11% drop in 2 years. The number of licensed child care centers had been increasing since 2014 but is now stagnant. There were 682 center-based child care in 2014 and 794  in 2019. That number remained at 794 in 2021.

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Data Provided By

Definitions: The number of licensed child care homes and child care centers in Maine. The year refers to the number of licensed sites in December of each year.

Data Source:
Maine Department of Health and Human Services Office of Child & Family Services
OCFS Data Dashboard   Licensed Providers choose December as month to view.

Footnotes: This data includes all licensed child care providers including those whose license is in process and under review. Data about private nursery schools that is distinct from licensed childcare for preschoolers is no longer available.

Updated February 2022