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Total Federal TANF & State MOE Expenditures for Child Care & Early Learning in FY2022

Resource February 8, 2024

The Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program provides federal grants to states to design and operate programs that help low-income families achieve self-sufficiency. TANF plays a crucial role in offering relief to low-income families through increased access to child care and early education opportunities in order to help parents enter or return to the workforce. States can transfer up to 30 percent of their TANF funds to the Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) program, which provides child care assistance for low-income families and funds child care quality-improvement initiatives.

TANF funding can also be spent on state preschool and other early education programs. These TANF funds are critical because we know that access to affordable, reliable, and high-quality early learning and child care opportunities provides working families with better job stability and overall economic security. This chart outlines how states are using their TANF funds, along with state funds, to support child care and early learning programs.

Across the U.S. in FY 2022:

  • 3% of TANF funds ($976 million) were transferred to CCDBG
  • 12% of TANF funds ($3.87 billion) were directly spent on child care
  • 10% of TANF funds ($3.25 billion) were spent on Pre-Kindergarten/Head Start
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