Childcare Providers Voice Concern Over New Income Guidelines

BURLINGTON — New income guidelines for subsidized childcare assistance go into effect Oct. 1 that providers say will impact families’ ability to afford daycare. The General Assembly approved the changes last month.

The new guidelines do away with graduated parent fees of eight, nine and 10 percent of gross monthly income, which have factored in family size and the number of hours of child care needed. Come Oct. 1, they’ll all pay 10 percent, which advocates say will be more than some families can afford.

“They barely make it as it is,” said Carrie Theall, executive director for Alamance Partnership for Children. “They want to work. They want to go to school, and they want to better their situation. Getting a little bit of support to put their child in a quality childcare center means the world to these folks.”

The guidelines also reduce the gross income eligibility requirement from 75 percent of the state median income to a percentage of the federal poverty line; 200 percent for children up to five years old, 133 percent for children six to 12 with no special needs.

“You may have a family whose young child will qualify for a childcare subsidy voucher, but the older child may not,” said Theall. “So that’s going to cause an issue with families who typically keep their kids in the same facility. What are they going to do for care?”

Dozens of childcare providers gathered at Alamance Partnership for Children’s offices in Burlington, sharing their fears about the choices some parents will be forced to make.

“They may have to look beyond daycare into homes, neighbors, older children,” said Sandra Lawson, owner of Lawson’s Preschool. “Some of them may even have to stretch out, go out on a limb and send their children home.”

They hope to meet with their legislators to convince them to reverse the new guidelines in favor of quality childcare.

“That if you don’t invest this money now, rest assured you will pay for it in the coming years and it will be at a greater cost than it is now,” said Davina Woods, director of Excel Christian Academy.

Another change goes into effect Jan. 1. The income of step-parents, relative caretakers and their spouses, and some children, will be included when determining eligibility for child care assistance.

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Childcare Providers Voice Concern Over New Income Guidelines
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カテゴリー: Childcare   パーマリンク


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