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FFYF Statement on Child Care, Early Learning in President’s FY25 Budget

News March 13, 2024

WASHINGTON – Earlier this week, the White House released details of President Biden’s FY2025 budget request to Congress, which includes discretionary funding for many of the federal early learning programs that support the care and education of young children in the United States.

In response, First Five Years Fund (FFYF) Executive Director Sarah Rittling released the following statement:  

“The president’s budget request to Congress serves as a comprehensive roadmap of his priorities, which again includes ways in which to help families access affordable care, supports states in their work to expand voluntary pre-K, and builds on existing early learning and development programs like Early Head Start, Head Start, and the Child Care Development Block grant. Unfortunately, the request includes less funding for the Preschool Development Grant Birth Through Five program, which plays an essential role in making sure state early learning programs are as effective and efficient as possible.

“Federal early learning and care programs in the United States provide millions of children with access to top-notch experiences that support their development while helping to ensure parents can go to work or school. But the reality is that current funding levels for these programs only reach a fraction of the eligible families who could benefit from them. We look forward to working with the White House and lawmakers from across the aisle to secure robust funding and address the needs of working families.

In Fall of 2023, FFYF and a coalition of 25 early learning organizations sent a letter to the Office of Management and Budget requesting an increase in funding for federal early learning and care programs, including the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program, Head Start and Early Head Start, the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA), and the Preschool Development Grant Birth through Five (PDG B-5) program. 

Details about the White House FY25 budget proposal include

  • Child Care and Development Block Grant:The largest source of federal funding for child care, this block grant is provided directly to state lead agencies to subsidize the child care expenses of eligible families and to improve the overall quality and supply of care. Proposed $8.5B (a $500M increase over the FY23 level) 
  • Head Start: Grant program to local organizations and agencies for Head Start services that support children’s growth from birth to age 5 through programs centered around early learning and development, health, and family well-being. Proposed $12.5B (a $544M increase over the FY23 level)
  • Preschool Development Grant Birth-5: Grant program available to states to support improved collaboration among existing programs as well as support for a mixed delivery system that includes child care and family child care providers, Head Start, state pre-kindergarten, and home visiting. Proposed $250M (a $65M decrease from the FY23 level)
  • Idea Part B 619 – Preschool Grants: Formula grants to states to provide special education and related services for children ages 3-5. Proposed $425M (a $5M increase under the FY23 level)
  • Idea Part C – Grants for Infants and Toddlers: Financial assistance to States to develop and implement a statewide system that provides early intervention services for infants and toddlers with disabilities and their families. Proposed $545M (a $5M increase over the FY23 level)
  • Child Care Access Means Parents in School (CCAMPIS): Grants provided to institutions of higher education to support campus-based child care services for lower-income students with young children. Proposed $80M (a $5M increase over the FY23 level)
  • Maternal Infant and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV): Grant program that supports voluntary home visitation services to support pregnant people and parents with young children who live in communities that face barriers to achieving positive maternal and child health outcomes. Proposed $566M (a $66M increase over the FY23 level)
  • The proposal also includes $14.9 billion in mandatory funding over 10 years for child care ($9.9 billion) and preschool ($5 billion).

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