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The SSRC Library allows visitors to access materials related to self-sufficiency programs, practice and research. Visitors can view common search terms, conduct a keyword search or create a custom search using any combination of the filters at the left side of this page. To conduct a keyword search, type a term or combination of terms into the search box below, select whether you want to search the exact phrase or the words in any order, and click on the blue button to the right of the search box to view relevant results.

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  • Individual Author: Michalopoulos, Charles ; Faucetta, Kristen ; Warren, Anne ; Mitchell, Robert
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2017

    Children from low-income families are more likely than those from higher-income families to have poor social, emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and health outcomes. One approach that has helped parents and their young children is home visiting, which provides information, resources, and support to expectant parents and families with young children. This brief summarizes evidence from existing studies on the impact of early childhood home visiting on children 5 and older for four national models of home visiting. (Author abstract)

    Children from low-income families are more likely than those from higher-income families to have poor social, emotional, cognitive, behavioral, and health outcomes. One approach that has helped parents and their young children is home visiting, which provides information, resources, and support to expectant parents and families with young children. This brief summarizes evidence from existing studies on the impact of early childhood home visiting on children 5 and older for four national models of home visiting. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Laurin, Alexandre; Milligan, Kevin
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2017

    Many Canadian families with young children struggle with the cost of childcare. The tax system helps alleviate some of that burden. At the federal level, the Child Care Expense Deduction (CCED) allows eligible expenses to be deducted from taxable income. In most cases, expenses must be deducted on the return of the lower-income parent, whose claim cannot exceed two-thirds of income. The CCED is also applied provincially to reduce provincial taxes, except in Quebec where parents benefit from either a provincially subsidized childcare space or from an income-tested refundable tax credit. Most income tax systems give childcare expenditures special treatment, with different normative motivations in mind. Our approach is more in line with the optimal tax approach in that we evaluate different ways of subsidizing childcare through their contribution to improving efficiency and equity, rather than apply normative rules to determine a single "right" way to treat childcare in the tax system. (Author introduction)

    Many Canadian families with young children struggle with the cost of childcare. The tax system helps alleviate some of that burden. At the federal level, the Child Care Expense Deduction (CCED) allows eligible expenses to be deducted from taxable income. In most cases, expenses must be deducted on the return of the lower-income parent, whose claim cannot exceed two-thirds of income. The CCED is also applied provincially to reduce provincial taxes, except in Quebec where parents benefit from either a provincially subsidized childcare space or from an income-tested refundable tax credit. Most income tax systems give childcare expenditures special treatment, with different normative motivations in mind. Our approach is more in line with the optimal tax approach in that we evaluate different ways of subsidizing childcare through their contribution to improving efficiency and equity, rather than apply normative rules to determine a single "right" way to treat childcare in the tax system. (Author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Bohn, Sarah; Danielson, Caroline
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2017

    Nearly a quarter of young children in California live in poverty—a fact that has profound educational, health, and economic repercussions now and in the long term. High housing costs and low wages are key barriers to reducing the prevalence of child poverty. Lawmakers have taken action to address these issues: the minimum wage is slated to increase to $15 an hour by 2022, and recently enacted laws aim to ease the state’s housing crisis.

    This report examines how high housing costs and low wages contribute to poverty among young children ages 0–5 and considers additional policy approaches that could mitigate need among this population. Our related interactive allows for a deeper exploration of how these potential changes could affect California’s diverse counties. We find:

    • In California, most young children live in areas with high costs of living, and most parents work. Among poor families with young children, 78 percent of adults work in low-wage jobs and 31 percent pay more than half their income toward housing. The challenges facing these families differ...

    Nearly a quarter of young children in California live in poverty—a fact that has profound educational, health, and economic repercussions now and in the long term. High housing costs and low wages are key barriers to reducing the prevalence of child poverty. Lawmakers have taken action to address these issues: the minimum wage is slated to increase to $15 an hour by 2022, and recently enacted laws aim to ease the state’s housing crisis.

    This report examines how high housing costs and low wages contribute to poverty among young children ages 0–5 and considers additional policy approaches that could mitigate need among this population. Our related interactive allows for a deeper exploration of how these potential changes could affect California’s diverse counties. We find:

    • In California, most young children live in areas with high costs of living, and most parents work. Among poor families with young children, 78 percent of adults work in low-wage jobs and 31 percent pay more than half their income toward housing. The challenges facing these families differ across the state. Those in low-cost areas—mostly inland and northern regions—are more likely to work low-wage jobs, while those in high-cost coastal and urban areas are more likely to pay a large share of their income toward housing. Minimum wage increases and lower housing costs could reduce child poverty substantially, especially in high-cost areas.
    • The current safety net is limited in its ability to reach some of the lowest-income families in the state. Devoting more resources to address this gap through, for example, expansions to the state’s Earned Income Tax Credit or a broad-based child credit could assist many severely poor families. Such approaches would have larger impacts on child poverty in low-cost areas. In contrast, rental assistance that targets both low incomes and high housing costs would reduce child poverty to a similar degree across the state. The approaches we examine range widely in estimated total costs, from $417 million to $2.3 billion, and would assist 210,000 to 390,000 young children statewide.
    • The current safety net is also limited in its ability to reach low- and moderate-income families who are struggling but may not fully qualify for existing programs—a particular challenge in high-cost areas. Taking into account the cost of living when determining income eligibility for work-based, child, or renter’s credits would help address this gap and could reach those missed by current programs. These approaches range from $4.1 billion to $5.6 billion in estimated total costs and would assist 310,000 to 1.6 million young children statewide. (Author summary)
  • Individual Author: Bartik, Timothy J.; Belford, Jonathan A.; Gormley, William T.; Anderson, Sara
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2016

    In this paper, benefits and costs are estimated for a universal pre-K program, provided by Tulsa Public Schools. Benefits are derived from estimated effects of Tulsa pre-K on retention by grade 9. Retention effects are projected to dollar benefits from future earnings increases and crime reductions. Based on these estimates, Tulsa pre-K has benefits that exceed costs by about 2-to-1. This benefit cost ratio is far less than the much higher benefit-cost ratios (ranging from 8-to-1 to 16-to-1) for more targeted and intensive pre-K programs, such as Perry Preschool and the Chicago Child-Parent Center (CPC) program. Comparing benefit-cost results from different studies suggests that our more modest estimates are due to two factors: 1) smaller percentage effects of pre-K on future earnings and crime in Tulsa than in Perry and CPC, and 2) smaller baseline crime rates in Tulsa than in the Perry and CPC comparison groups. (Author abstract)

    In this paper, benefits and costs are estimated for a universal pre-K program, provided by Tulsa Public Schools. Benefits are derived from estimated effects of Tulsa pre-K on retention by grade 9. Retention effects are projected to dollar benefits from future earnings increases and crime reductions. Based on these estimates, Tulsa pre-K has benefits that exceed costs by about 2-to-1. This benefit cost ratio is far less than the much higher benefit-cost ratios (ranging from 8-to-1 to 16-to-1) for more targeted and intensive pre-K programs, such as Perry Preschool and the Chicago Child-Parent Center (CPC) program. Comparing benefit-cost results from different studies suggests that our more modest estimates are due to two factors: 1) smaller percentage effects of pre-K on future earnings and crime in Tulsa than in Perry and CPC, and 2) smaller baseline crime rates in Tulsa than in the Perry and CPC comparison groups. (Author abstract)

  • Individual Author: Martorell, Paco; Stange, Kevin; McFarlin Jr., Isaac
    Reference Type: Journal Article
    Year: 2016

    Public investments in repairs, modernization, and construction of schools cost billions. However, little is known about the nature of school facility investments, whether such investments actually change the physical condition of public schools, and the subsequent causal impacts on student achievement. We study the achievement effects of nearly 1,400 capital campaigns initiated and financed by local school districts, comparing districts where school capital bonds were either narrowly approved or narrowly defeated by district voters. Overall, we find little evidence that school capital campaigns improve student achievement. Our event-study analyses focusing on students that attend targeted schools and therefore are exposed to major campus renovations also generate very precise zero estimates of achievement effects. Thus, locally financed school capital campaigns - the predominant method through which facility investments are made - may represent a limited tool for realizing substantial gains in student achievement or closing achievement gaps. (Author abstract)

    Public investments in repairs, modernization, and construction of schools cost billions. However, little is known about the nature of school facility investments, whether such investments actually change the physical condition of public schools, and the subsequent causal impacts on student achievement. We study the achievement effects of nearly 1,400 capital campaigns initiated and financed by local school districts, comparing districts where school capital bonds were either narrowly approved or narrowly defeated by district voters. Overall, we find little evidence that school capital campaigns improve student achievement. Our event-study analyses focusing on students that attend targeted schools and therefore are exposed to major campus renovations also generate very precise zero estimates of achievement effects. Thus, locally financed school capital campaigns - the predominant method through which facility investments are made - may represent a limited tool for realizing substantial gains in student achievement or closing achievement gaps. (Author abstract)

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