Unintended and inequitable impacts of a 2017 policy change for license-exempt home child care
This research brief addresses the question of whether an Illinois policy change that aimed to improve the quality of child care had the unintentional effect of sharply reducing the number of children in subsidized child care. In February 2017, the Illinois child care subsidy program (CCAP), spurred by a change in federal policy, the 2014 reauthorization of the Child Care and Development Block Grant, announced that license-exempt home child care (or FFN – family, friend and neighbor) providers would need to complete up to 21 hours of preservice health and safety training in order to receive child care payments from the state. This would bring them more in line with training required of licensed home and center child care providers. Anecdotal evidence, including reports from staff of the Illinois Child Care Resource and Referral Agencies which administer CCAP, indicates that some FFN child care providers were unwilling or unable to undertake this training. Over the next year through February 2018, the number of subsidized FFN providers in Illinois fell 23 percent, and subsidized children in that care fell 21 percent. (author abstract)
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Unintended and inequitable impacts of a 2017 policy change for license-exempt home child care: Executive summary