ERIC Number: ED416007
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Oct-23
Reference Count: N/A
The Advancing Nanny State: Why the Government Should Stay Out of Child Care. Policy Analysis No. 285.
In October 1997 at the White House Conference on Child Care, the Clinton administration announced several initiatives to expand federal control over day care. This policy paper contends that federal initiatives of this type are misguided because they seriously misread the true state of child care in the United States. In response to advocacy groups that claim that there is a shortage of child care facilities, that they are unaffordable, and that unregulated day care harms children, this paper argues that almost all parents are satisfied with their child care arrangements, that child care fees have not changed in real terms since the late 1970s, and the number of providers has kept pace with the demand. Further, the National Day Care Home Study found no indication that unregulated family day care is harmful to children. Rather, family day care caters successfully to the diverse needs of the children in care. This paper is critical of the suggestion that national standards are needed for child care and notes that the debate turns on the definition of quality, which has been defined by President Clinton in terms of accreditation, wages, and funding levels rather than results and impact on children. Given these facts--that parents are satisfied with their children's care and that high-quality care is both available and affordable even for low-income parents--this paper contends that Congress should resist attempts to increase child care funding and to impose federal standards on providers and parents. Contains approximately 50 references. (KB)
Descriptors: Day Care, Day Care Effects, Early Childhood Education, Employer Supported Day Care, Family Day Care, Government Role, Policy Analysis, Public Policy
Cato Institute, 1000 Massachusetts Avenue, N.W., Washington, DC 20001; phone: 202-842-0200; fax: 202-842-3490; www: http://www.cato.org/pubs/pas/pa-285es.html ($6 each; 5 or more copies, $3 each).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Cato Inst., Washington, DC.