Licensing is traditionally viewed as providing the foundation (or the floor) of quality in early care and education (ECE) settings. States and territories are responsible for licensing child care programs, and a license serves as permission to legally operate a child care program. The essential purpose of licensing is to provide basic protections to prevent harm to children.
Infant and Toddlers
Developmental research has highlighted the importance of fathers for children’s early academic success, and growing evidence suggests that children living in poverty may benefit the most from positive father involvement. Using a subsample of children from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study-Birth Cohort (ECLS-B), this study examined direct and mediated pathways from family poverty to children’s preschool achievement.
The associations between trajectories of child care quality from ages 2 to 4 years and children's cognitive performance at 4 years (n = 250) were tested. Distinct quality trajectories were identified: low and high ascending Teaching and Interactions trajectory; low and high Provision for Learning trajectory. Membership in the high ascending Teaching and Interactions trajectory was associated with better numeracy (effect size [ES] = .39, confidence interval [CI] = .21–.66), receptive vocabulary (ES = .41, CI = .14–.68), and school readiness (ES = .32, CI = .06–.58).
Publicly funded center-based preschool programs were designed to enhance low-income children’s early cognitive and social-emotional skills in preparation for kindergarten. In the U.S., the federal Head Start program and state-funded public school–based pre-kindergarten (pre-k) programs are the two primary center-based settings in which low-income children experience publicly funded preschool.
If a single mother earns $25,000 per year, can she receive a subsidy to help pay for child care? What if she decides to attend a training program? If she does qualify for a subsidy, how much will she have to pay out of pocket? The answers to these questions depend on a family’s exact circumstances, including the ages of the children, the number of people in the family, income, and where they live. Child care subsidies are provided through a federal block grant program called the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF). CCDF provides funding to the States, Territories, and Tribes.
This article assesses the consequences of poverty between a child's prenatal year and 5th birthday for several adult achievement, health, and behavior outcomes, measured as late as age 37. Using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (1,589) and controlling for economic conditions in middle childhood and adolescence, as well as demographic conditions at the time of the birth, findings indicate statistically significant and, in some cases, quantitatively large detrimental effects of early poverty on a number of attainment-related outcomes (adult earnings and work hours).
Why parental socioeconomic status correlates strongly with various measures of child and adult achievement is an important and controversial research question. After summarizing findings from recent contributions to this literature, we conduct two sets of analyses using data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamics. Completed schooling and nonmarital childbearing are related to parental income during early and middle childhood, as well as during adolescence.
Toddlers are rapidly developing movement and language abilities that help them interact with their surroundings. They may go through changes from infant to toddler care settings, or from younger to older toddler childcare rooms, which bring new people, new schedules, and new expectations. Positive relationships with caregivers are essential for cultivating emerging self-regulation skills. This document provides tips to help caregivers use co-regulation to promote self-regulation skill development in toddlers. (Edited author introduction)
The first year of life is a critical time for infants to begin developing secure attachments with their parents and caregivers (secure attachment is when children know they can depend on adults to respond sensitively to their needs). This helps babies learn that their world is a safe place and it is an important foundation for self-regulation development. When babies transition to childcare outside of the home, they need to form relationships with other caregivers and learn through experience that their needs will be met. (Edited author introduction)
The home environment, including a child’s relationship with parents and primary caregivers, is the biggest influence on a child’s ability to develop self-regulation skills. Home visiting professionals have a unique opportunity to help both the child and parent or caregiver develop self-regulation skills and to help strengthen their relationship. This document provides tips to help home visitors empower caregivers with skills and tools to provide co-regulation support for their child. (Edited author introduction)