ERIC Number: ED471286
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2002-Sep
Reference Count: N/A
Child Care: States Exercise Flexibility in Setting Reimbursement Rates and Providing Access for Low-Income Children. Report to Congressional Requesters.
Shaul, Marnie S.
In order to promote low-income parents' job preparation and work efforts, states were given greater flexibility to design programs using federal funds to subsidize child care for low-income families. At Congressional request, this report from the General Accounting Office describes how states set reimbursement rates and calculates the extent to which subsidies and co-payments allow families access to various types of child care in selected communities. Information sources for the report include a survey of child care officials in 50 states and the District of Columbia; interviews with child care officials in state, local, and community-based organizations in urban, suburban, and rural locations in three states (Illinois, Maryland, and Oregon); and a comparison of fees charged by certain types of providers in each of 9 locations with state-established reimbursements for a 2-year-old living with 1 parent. Findings indicated that states reported considering market rate survey results as well as budget and policy goals in setting maximum reimbursement rates. In the nine communities visited, hypothetical families' access to child care varied widely as a result of the different state subsidies and family co-payments. State and local officials indicated that, in some cases, families were able to reach financial agreements with child care providers who were willing to accept the reimbursement rate as full payment although it was below the price charged to nonsubsidized families. Families often relied on informal child care providers who were reimbursed at lower rates than those for formal providers. The report's four appendices include a description of the study scope and methodology and information on reimbursement rates for informal child care providers in eight communities. (KB)
Descriptors: Case Studies, Child Care, Government Publications, Low Income Groups, National Surveys, State Programs
U.S. General Accounting Office, P.O. Box 37050, Washington, DC 20013 (first copy free; additional copies $2.00 each; 100 or more: 25% discount). Tel: 202-512-6000; Fax: 202-512-6061; Web site: http://www.gao.gov. For full text: http://www.gao.gov/new.items/d02894.pdf.
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: General Accounting Office, Washington, DC.