Early Learning Fast Facts
- With more than 65 percent of parents working outside the home - safe, reliable child care is critical to our economy. Child care is expensive, consuming up to one-third of the median wages for a family of four. Child Care Works (PA’s subsidized child care program for low-income children) serves nearly 135,000 children each month but waiting lists are long and thousands of children go unserved some times for more than a year.
- High-quality child care is a sound investment in children’s development and learning. But only 3.5 percent of child care slots for children birth to 4 years old are in the highest quality programs - achieving Keystone STARS four rating or other accreditation.
- High quality pre-kindergarten is a proven investment – every dollar spent returns $16 in reduced crime, education, and welfare savings as well as higher earnings and increased taxes paid in adulthood. But fewer than 18 percent of Pennsylvania’s 3- and 4-year olds have access to high-quality, publicly-funded pre-K.
A child's earliest years are a critical period of brain development laying the foundation for cognitive growth as well as social and emotional development.
Pennsylvania Partnerships for Children’s work in early learning focuses on high-quality child care, pre-kindergarten, and home visiting programs designed to assure that children enter school ready to learn and prepared to succeed.
High-quality early learning programs can help level the playing field, especially for low-income children, by boosting school performance and self-sufficiency over a lifetime. Our work in early childhood is devoted to Pennsylvania's youngest learners and our most vulnerable citizens. Creating the foundation for a solid start makes all the difference in the life of a child.
For more information, please contact Joan Benso at: firstname.lastname@example.org
To learn more about our public policy work in this and other areas that impact children's lives, sign up to receive our email updates.