ERIC Number: ED323283
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1990-Feb
Reference Count: N/A
Quality, Price, and Income in Child Care Choice.
Hofferth, Sandra L.; Wissoker, Douglas A.
This study uses a multinomial logic model to examine the impact of price, quality, family income, and family characteristics on the choice of child care. Price is measured in terms of predicted expenditures on care. Quality is measured by the ratio of children to staff. The following modes of care are examined: (1) day care center or nursery school; (2) care by sitter; (3) care by relative; and (4) care by husband/partner. Statistical data on employed women (i.e., women who were either working, in training, or in school) were drawn from the 1985 wave of the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth for analysis. The following summary findings are reported: (1) price is the most important factor affecting the choice of care; (2) quality of care is a significant factor in the choice of center care; (3) family income affects how much is spent for center care, but does not affect which mode of care is chosen; and (4) the mother's earnings do not affect how much is spent on care, but do affect the mode of care chosen. The following policy implications are outlined: (1) policies that raise family income allow families who use center care to pay more for it, but are not likely to affect the mode of care chosen; (2) policies that increase the mother's income will not affect how much is spent on care, but should encourage the choice of center care over other modes; (3) policies that reduce the price of care should encourage the choice of centers and sitters; and (4) policies that raise the quality of center care are likely to encourage the choice of centers. Statistical data are included on seven tables. A list of 33 references is appended. (FMW)
Descriptors: Child Caregivers, Costs, Day Care, Day Care Centers, Extended Family, Family Financial Resources, Family Income, Family Programs, Fathers, Models, Predictor Variables, Public Policy
The Urban Institute, 2100 M Street NW, Washington DC 20037.
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Smith Richardson Foundation, Inc., Greensboro, NC.
Authoring Institution: Urban Inst., Washington, DC.
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Population Association of America (Toronto, Ontario, May 3-5, 1990).