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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: Cancian, Maria; Guarin, Angela; Hodges, Leslie; Meyer, Daniel R.
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2019

    The purpose of this report is to begin to fill in the blanks by documenting the characteristics of more than 10,000 noncustodial parents who participated in the Child Support Noncustodial Parent Employment Demonstration program (CSPED).  The federally funded intervention was operated by child support agency grantees within eight eligible states, and served noncustodial parents who were behind on child support payments and experiencing employment difficulties. (Author introduction)

    The purpose of this report is to begin to fill in the blanks by documenting the characteristics of more than 10,000 noncustodial parents who participated in the Child Support Noncustodial Parent Employment Demonstration program (CSPED).  The federally funded intervention was operated by child support agency grantees within eight eligible states, and served noncustodial parents who were behind on child support payments and experiencing employment difficulties. (Author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Bitler, Marianne; Hoynes, Hilary; Domina, Thurston
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2018

    Preschool interventions are arguably one of the most important elements of support for poor families. Head Start, a federal program for children in low-income families administered through the Department of Health and Human Services, is a case in point. While research shows a range of benefits lasting beyond preschool for participants, evidence of the “fade-out” of cognitive gains of the preschool years and the differential impact of the program on children with different skill levels in the preschool population has prompted debate over its efficacy. Our recent work is the first comprehensive analysis of how modern Head Start impacts vary across the skill distribution in the preschool and early elementary period. We find evidence of a large and positive short-term effect of Head Start, and that cognitive gains are largest at the bottom of the achievement spectrum, particularly among Hispanic children. The results of our study and others showing a positive effect in other areas add to the evidence of the success of Head Start in improving the wellbeing of poor children. (Author...

    Preschool interventions are arguably one of the most important elements of support for poor families. Head Start, a federal program for children in low-income families administered through the Department of Health and Human Services, is a case in point. While research shows a range of benefits lasting beyond preschool for participants, evidence of the “fade-out” of cognitive gains of the preschool years and the differential impact of the program on children with different skill levels in the preschool population has prompted debate over its efficacy. Our recent work is the first comprehensive analysis of how modern Head Start impacts vary across the skill distribution in the preschool and early elementary period. We find evidence of a large and positive short-term effect of Head Start, and that cognitive gains are largest at the bottom of the achievement spectrum, particularly among Hispanic children. The results of our study and others showing a positive effect in other areas add to the evidence of the success of Head Start in improving the wellbeing of poor children. (Author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Duncan, Greg J.; Magnuson, Katherine
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    Early childhood is an important, but contested, topic of research related to the production of human capital, and the only period of childhood and adolescence with relatively little public investment. Some scholars interpret the early childhood intervention evidence as showing promising opportunities for addressing inequities in human capital, and consequently argue for significant expansion of public investment. Other scholars come to more cautious or even negative conclusions, worrying particularly about the degree of risk and uncertainty in current evidence regarding longterm payoffs to early childhood investments. In this article, we review the evidence on the potential of early childhood investments, particularly center-based early childhood education, to reduce economic inequality. (author introduction)

    Early childhood is an important, but contested, topic of research related to the production of human capital, and the only period of childhood and adolescence with relatively little public investment. Some scholars interpret the early childhood intervention evidence as showing promising opportunities for addressing inequities in human capital, and consequently argue for significant expansion of public investment. Other scholars come to more cautious or even negative conclusions, worrying particularly about the degree of risk and uncertainty in current evidence regarding longterm payoffs to early childhood investments. In this article, we review the evidence on the potential of early childhood investments, particularly center-based early childhood education, to reduce economic inequality. (author introduction)

  • Individual Author: Skinner, Curtis; Hartig, Seth; Setty, Suma
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    Ohio advocates and policymakers have recently proposed important new policy initiatives to help the state’s struggling working families. This policy brief models three reforms that promise to significantly improve the economic security of low-income Ohio families with children.

    First, we examine the effect of introducing a free and universal prekindergarten program for four-year-olds on families’ out-of-pocket child care costs. Child care costs are a major expense for working parents.

    Second, we investigate the problem of the “canyon effect” in child care subsidy policy and identify solutions. As described by Policy Matters Ohio, the canyon effect occurs when a working parent who loses a child care subsidy—because she loses her job, for example—must take a job at a lower wage to qualify again for the subsidy. Because child care is so costly, a subsidy can make the difference between being able to work or not, so the parent has a strong incentive to recover child care assistance, even if it means moving down a career ladder.

    Finally, we model the effect of...

    Ohio advocates and policymakers have recently proposed important new policy initiatives to help the state’s struggling working families. This policy brief models three reforms that promise to significantly improve the economic security of low-income Ohio families with children.

    First, we examine the effect of introducing a free and universal prekindergarten program for four-year-olds on families’ out-of-pocket child care costs. Child care costs are a major expense for working parents.

    Second, we investigate the problem of the “canyon effect” in child care subsidy policy and identify solutions. As described by Policy Matters Ohio, the canyon effect occurs when a working parent who loses a child care subsidy—because she loses her job, for example—must take a job at a lower wage to qualify again for the subsidy. Because child care is so costly, a subsidy can make the difference between being able to work or not, so the parent has a strong incentive to recover child care assistance, even if it means moving down a career ladder.

    Finally, we model the effect of improving the state Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) on the economic well-being of Ohio working families. The Ohio EITC is currently set at 10 percent of the federal credit and is not refundable, meaning that a family that has no income tax liability does not receive the credit. The improved EITC would be refundable and equal to 30 percent of the federal credit; it would also remove an existing cap on the credit for earnings above a very low level.

    The impact of each of these reforms on the economic security of representative low-income families in the state is estimated with the National Center for Children in Poverty’s 2015 Ohio Family Resource Simulator (FRS) policy modeling tool, updated with the assistance of Policy Matters Ohio. (Author introduction)

     

  • Individual Author: Skinner, Curtis; Hartig, Seth; Setty, Suma
    Reference Type: Report
    Year: 2015

    Colorado advocates and policymakers have launched important recent initiatives—both legislated and proposed—to help the state’s struggling working families. This policy brief presents the results of three state policy reforms that promise to significantly improve the economic security of low-income Colorado families with children: (1) Implementing two state income tax credits for families with children that have been signed into law, the Child Tax Credit for children under six years old and the Earned Income Tax Credit; (2) Introducing a free and universal prekindergarten program for four-year-olds; and (3) Initiating universal, full-day kindergarten for five-year-olds. The impact of each of these reforms on the economic security of representative low-income families in the state is estimated with the National Center for Children in Poverty’s 2015 Colorado Family Resource Simulator (FRS) policy modeling tool, updated with the assistance of the Colorado Center on Law and Policy. (Author abstract)

     

    Colorado advocates and policymakers have launched important recent initiatives—both legislated and proposed—to help the state’s struggling working families. This policy brief presents the results of three state policy reforms that promise to significantly improve the economic security of low-income Colorado families with children: (1) Implementing two state income tax credits for families with children that have been signed into law, the Child Tax Credit for children under six years old and the Earned Income Tax Credit; (2) Introducing a free and universal prekindergarten program for four-year-olds; and (3) Initiating universal, full-day kindergarten for five-year-olds. The impact of each of these reforms on the economic security of representative low-income families in the state is estimated with the National Center for Children in Poverty’s 2015 Colorado Family Resource Simulator (FRS) policy modeling tool, updated with the assistance of the Colorado Center on Law and Policy. (Author abstract)

     

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