The core of a strong, effective child care program is data and research, so the Office of Child Care (OCC) works to collect data from our grantees about their CCDF programs and also information from the child care research community related to the best ways to run high quality child care programs.
Using the information collected on the reports submitted by states, tribes and territories, OCC is able to put together data on various CCDF topics, such as the average monthly percentages of children in care by age group, the percentage of children served by type of care and the child care co-payment as a percent of monthly income. This data is further broken down by state/territory.
American Rescue Plan Act (ARP Act)
In April 2021 the Biden Administration announced the release of $39 billion of American Rescue Plan funds for states, territories, and tribes to address the child care crisis caused by COVID-19. These funds will provide a lifeline to hundreds of thousands of child care providers and early childhood educations, provide a safe and healthy learning environment for more than 5 million children, and help parents, especially mothers, get back to work.
The ARP Act appropriated funding for child care through three funding streams. These include:
- Section 2201. $14,990,000,000 for supplemental CCDF Discretionary Funds, available until September 30, 2024.
- Section 2202. $23,975,000,000 for child care stabilization grants, available until September 30, 2023.
- Section 9801. $3,550,000,000 in Mandatory and Matching funding for CCDF, a permanent annual appropriation.
ARP Act Supplemental Funding State Fact Sheets offer state by state information about the allocation of American Rescue Plan funs that will support families, child care providers, and communities across the country.
ACF has a long history of child care research, with child care studies that date back to the 1970s. The reauthorized Child Care and Development Block Grant (CCDBG) Act of 2014 allows for up to one-half of one percent of CCDF funding to be reserved to conduct research and demonstration activities and to conduct periodic, external, independent evaluations of the CCDF program on increasing access to child care services and improving the quality and safety of child care services. ACF-funded child care research focuses on topics that respond to the information needs of the Office of Child Care and early care and education policy-makers and stakeholders at the state and national levels. These projects are overseen by the Office of Planning, Research, and Evaluation, the research arm of ACF. The Child Care and Early Education Policy Research Consortium (CCEEPRC) , Child Care and Early Education Research Connections Visit disclaimer page , and the large portfolio of ongoing contract- and grant-funded child care research projects form the core of child care research at ACF.
Every two years the OCC reports to Congress on the current state of the CCDF program. The report is a comprehensive picture of CCDF, including information about the program, data collected, plans for using CCDF funds and child care research.
The Child Care and Development Block Grant Act requires an annual report on whether States use CCDF funding in accordance with provisions related to priority for services. The law requires priority for children of families with very low incomes and children with special needs. CCDF regulations add a priority for services for children who are experiencing homelessness.
The CCDF Policies Database is a source of information on the detailed policies used to operate child care subsidy programs under the Child Care and Development Fund (CCDF).