Dems: Ensuring the best-possible child care for Iowa families

February 2, 2016
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In November 2014, Congress reauthorized the Child Care & Development Block Grant for the first time since 1996. New requirements will bring much-needed improvements that are child-focused, family friendly and fair to providers, while maintaining state flexibility.

 

The Iowa Department of Human Services has developed a new Child Care State Plan that incorporates the requirements of the reauthorization without need for additional funding.

 

Changes will:

  • Provide consistency for kids by increasing eligibility for child care assistance to 12 months, instead of 6.
  • Soften the impact on working families by tapering off child care assistance as income goes up.
  • Allow families to receive child care assistance for 3 months while searching for work.
  • Offer higher reimbursement rates for providers that achieve a high Quality Rating score.
  • Require a bigger investment in quality programming.
  • Give more on-site monitoring of child care settings.
  • Include annual unannounced visits to providers.
  • Require more training for providers.

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